As the coronavirus continues to rip through Victoria’s aged care homes, the government has decided to step in an attempt to stop the spread.
As the coronavirus continues to rip through Victoria’s aged care homes, the government has decided to step in an attempt to stop the spread.

Drastic move to control virus outbreaks

The state has taken over three Melbourne nursing homes as volatile coronavirus outbreaks continue to wreak havoc in Victorian aged-care facilities.

Melbourne Health has taken over Glenlyn Aged Care in Glenroy, Western Health is now managing Florence Aged Care in Altona North, and Bacchus Marsh Hospital is controlling operations at Kaylna Care.

"There are three aged-care facilities - in broad terms - in the west of Melbourne that are of particular concern. We have essentially assumed the responsibilities of these centres," Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters on Thursday.

Melbourne Health has taken over Glenlyn Aged Care in Glenroy. Picture: Mark Stewart
Melbourne Health has taken over Glenlyn Aged Care in Glenroy. Picture: Mark Stewart

Under the plan, care staff will be replaced by healthcare workers and medical specialists in a bid to prevent further deaths in aged care.

Mr Andrews said transferring patients to hospital was "traumatic and tragic", so the decision to move residents followed thorough medical assessment.

"Anyone that needs to go to hospital will go to hospital," he said.

Mr Andrews said some providers had wanted all residents to be moved to hospital without just cause, and at least one provider had ordered 100 ambulances to retrieve patients.

Mr Andrews said this was not acceptable.

"We don't have a system that provides the easiest outcome for the private operator," he said.

Premier Daniel Andrews announces three aged-care homes will now be managed by the State Government. Picture: Sarah Matray/NCA NewsWire
Premier Daniel Andrews announces three aged-care homes will now be managed by the State Government. Picture: Sarah Matray/NCA NewsWire

It comes after Victoria recorded 278 cases, the state's lowest daily increase since July 20.

A total of 664 Victorians are in hospital, with 37 in intensive care, but eight more deaths took the state's death toll to 275.

One woman in her 50s, two men in their 70s, two women and two men in their 80s and one man in his 90s died. Four of the eight deaths were linked to aged care.

It comes just a day after the state and country's deadliest 24-hour period, with 21 deaths announced on Wednesday.

Originally published as Drastic move to control virus outbreaks