Collaborative response

By Steph McNicol – 

MACEDON Ranges residents will now have access to a one-stop-shop support centre during COVID-19, thanks to collaboration between Macedon Ranges Shire Council and shire-wide health organisations.

The Recovery Operations Centre opened last week as part of the #InThisTogether campaign by Macedon Ranges Shire Council and will be the number one destination for residents seeking advice and support during the pandemic.

Council has banded with health organisations across the shire including Cobaw Community Health, Kyneton Health, Central Victorian Primary Care Partnership and Macedon Ranges Health, to ensure community members receive the assistance they need.

As part of their commitment to the centre, Kyneton Health, as part of Central Highlands Rural Health, has organised a Respiratory Assessment Clinic at Kyneton Hospital’s old ambulance bay.

Central Highlands Rural Health chief executive Maree Cuddihy said patients wouldn’t have to go through the main hospital entrance, but instead through the ambulance bay where they would be met with experienced staff.

“Our local community have been amazing helping us build three assessment rooms in record time. We cannot thank our community supporters enough for everything they’ve done,” Ms Cuddihy said.

Cobaw Community Health Services is also part of the recovery centre and will provide all of their usual services while adapting to COVID-19 restrictions.

Cobaw Community Health Services chief executive Margaret McDonald said the needs of the community were diverse during this time.

“We as organisations are working really well together. During this time information sharing is so critical and the needs of the community are important to ensure we respond with the other services,” Ms McDonald said.

“We provide a range of disability services so we’ll continue to provide those, along with all our allied health services, whether it’s through telehealth or a sighted visit to deliver something.”

Macedon Ranges Shire Council Mayor Janet Pearce said council encouraged the community to work with them and participating health organisations to ask for and offer help.

“The ROC is a necessary innovation from council and partners as we all continue to adapt and deliver services and programs despite the restrictions in place,” she said.

“We update www.mrsc.vic.gov.au/coronavirus daily but encourage residents to contact the ROC if they are in need of any type of support or any updates, resources or support services need to be added to the list.”

The centre’s webpage will be the main point of information related to COVID-19 where updates will be provided, as well as a list of support resources for residents seeking help.

Community members are encouraged to have their flu vaccinations as winter approaches to reduce the impact of influenza on the community.

For more information, call the Recovery Operations Centre on 5422 0237, email recovery@mrsc.vic.gov.au or call visit www.mrsc.vic.gov.au/coronavirus.