From the 23 November 2021, the SA Government will be opening up national and international borders to fully vaccinated travellers. In this phase of living with COVID-19, it is expected that COVID-19 cases in SA will increase. Integrative Health Solutions has developed a plan for “Living with COVID” in response to the guidance provided by SA Health. We are committed to keeping our patients, staff and community safe at all times.
IMPORTANT WAITING ROOM POLICY:
During this challenging time, our practitioners have requested that all consultations be conducted by telehealth, or brief consultations by telephone where possible. Medicare rebates are available for some of these consultations if you have been seen in the practice in the last 12 months. We will continue to offer patients without respiratory symptoms face to face appointments in the clinic where a physical examination, or treatment is essential. New patients will also continue to be seen in person at this time, but may be seen outside of the practice. Other essential treatments such as immunisations, ECG, injections etc. will continue to be available in person. Staff and practitioners are now required to wear appropriate PPE in line with the SA Health risk matrix released on the 18/11/21, during all interactions with patients.
You will be greeted at the main entry by our concierge who will continue to ask screening questions about Respiratory Symptoms. It is more important than ever that patients with respiratory symptoms DO NOT enter the practice as any COVID- 19 positive cases can have serious consequences to other patients in the waiting room who may be pregnant, have complex medical conditions or are immunocompromised.
Screening will now also include COVID-19 Vaccination Status and proof of vaccination may be requested. People who are partially, or unvaccinated are deemed to be at greater risk of COVID-19 infection and greater risk of spreading to other patients and staff inside the clinic. SA Health have given recommendations that unvaccinated patients CANNOT come into our waiting room. If you choose not to disclose this information, that is your choice, however you will not be able to enter the practice waiting area.
During this challenging time, all patients will now be directed to wait at the rear of the practice, on the balcony, until your practitioner is ready for your consultation. If you have mobility issues, please let our team know so that we can best accommodate you. In moving our waiting room outdoors, we are limiting the risk of quarantine for both staff and patients and doing our best to keep everyone safe. Your consultation may also be conducted outdoors in the garden areas, at the discretion of your practitioner.
QR check in will continue as we are considered a high risk venue. The use of hand sanitizer, social distancing and regular surface cleaning of the waiting room will also continue.
MASKS ARE MANDATORY IN THE PRACTICE
It is vital that all patients will be required to wear a correctly fitted mask inside the clinic. There will be no mask exemptions inside the clinic as there will be patients in the waiting room with medical needs that are vulnerable to COVID-19. We appreciate some patients may be unable to wear a mask and this is acceptable while waiting on the balcony until your practitioner is ready for your appointment. Please in these cases, just keep a safe distance from other patients.
ENQUIRIES FOR VACCINATION EXEMPTIONS
Doctors are unable to provide patients with a vaccination exemption with very few exceptions. There are strict criteria for exemptions as outlined by ATAGI and the application needs to be approved by the chief medical officer and her staff. A temporary exemption is only provided in extenuating and rare circumstances. This can and should be written by your usual general practitioner.
To ensure continuity of treatment for all patients, Infusion clinics will be conducted separately for those who have and have not been vaccinated. These will be expanded as necessary to accommodate demand. Bookings may now be made online for these appointments.
COVID-19 VACCINATION CLINICS
Covid-19 vaccination clinics will continue and patients will be directed by the concierge as to where to wait for their appointment. Please remember to present to the concierge to notify them of your arrival.
ALLIED & COMPLEMENTARY PRACTITIONERS
All practitioners who require face-to-face consultations such as massage, acupuncture, chiropractic, chinese medicine and podiatry will continue to offer these services in person at this time.
Where possible, telehealth or telephone consultations are preferred for naturopathy, diabetes education and counselling.
Is not available for booking at this time.
We have made every effort to accommodate all of our patients, staff and practitioners as best we can in developing this policy, while achieving optimal safety for all.
We appreciate your assistance in keeping everyone safe during these challenging times. No doubt the situation will be evolving and we appreciate your patience throughout these changes. Updates to this policy will be made available as they occur.
This has not been an easy decision but one that we feel is in the best interests of our practice community and we appreciate your support in this. While we acknowledge some people are concerned by these changes, we are doing our best in difficult and uncertain circumstances to weigh up the interests of a number of people with different and competing views and are trying to make decisions that are in the best interest of our staff, practitioners, patients and the broader community.
We ask that you continue to treat all of our staff and practitioners kindly and respectfully at all times and we have a zero tolerance policy towards abuse.