Skip to main content

insights

Supporting aged care providers through the COVID-19 pandemic

Woman looking at her phone

Residential aged care providers across Australia are utilising Telstra Health’s Message Manager software to help them quickly and easily communicate with residents’ loved ones about changes or restrictions related to COVID-19.

Clear and frequent communication has never been more vital, with residential aged care providers utilising the software to streamline the process which ordinarily may involve multiple calls, voicemails, and individual SMS messages.

We spoke with Donwood Community Aged Care Service’s Chief Executive Officer, Natasha Wilkinson, and Baptcare’s Residential Systems Project Co-ordinator, James Simon, about how their organisations are utilising Message Manager to help communicate more effectively with residents’ loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Donwood Community Aged Care Services
Natasha Wilkinson - CEO

What type of information is Donwood using Message Manager to help communicate in relation to COVID-19?
So many things: information on restrictions and changes, updates about GP and allied health visits, little messages to say that their loved one is doing well and that we hope everything is alright with our residents’ families in these challenging times.

In what way is your team using the software to help communicate around COVID-19? 
We’re utilising all functionality to communicate COVID-19 related information with families. That includes SMS and emails to all facility residents’ primary contacts, specific groups and individual contacts.  

How much time would you estimate is being saved by communicating important information related to COVID-19 compared to traditional methods? 
It has saved us an incredible amount of time. It’s seriously a push of a button. I use Message Manager a few times a day and it has saved us so much time and angst as everyone is on the same page as things change.

Is Message Manager helping ensure communications are consistent and tracked during this time? 
All next of kin are getting the same message, which helps ensure each family can share up-to-date, accurate information within their family and friend group. Our team can also look back to see what other staff members have written to make sure all information is transparent. 

Has using the software helped Donwood to build a stronger relationship with residents’ families during this time? 
Absolutely – they feel so informed and that we are in control. They can read about what Donwood are doing and feel that their loved ones are safe and that they are informed. Our residents’ family members truly love receiving all the information we send via Message Manager in this uncertain world.

Is there anything else you would like to share around your team’s experience in using Message Manager during this period? 
We love it – I think it’s the best system. I couldn’t recommend it strongly enough; especially to providers who are already using Telstra Health’s Clinical and Care Management. 

Baptcare
James Simon - Residential Systems Project Co-ordinator

What type of information is Baptcare using Message Manager to help communicate in relation to COVID-19? 
We have been communicating about visitor restrictions and promoting ways that families and residents can connect, such as via Skype calls and sending letters and cards to residents through the mail.

In what way is your team using the software to help communicate around COVID-19?
Baptcare are using Message Manager to help communicate to residents’ loved ones about essential COVID-19 related information. We are also sending personalised updates to individual resident’s loved ones around specialised care and GP visits while we continue to monitor the health of our residents.

How much time would you estimate is being saved by communicating important information related to COVID-19 compared to traditional methods? 
The ability to easily send group emails has saved us around 20-40 minutes per communication. We also save a lot of time that was previously spent playing phone tag trying to get in contact with family members.

Is Message Manager helping ensure communications are consistent and tracked during this time? 
It will be helpful to have all previous communications stored to confirm that care updates were provided if we were to ever receive a complaint. 


To find out more about Telstra Health’s Message Manager software click here or contact us via email

The is a case study only. Results will vary depending on circumstantial organisational factors, including efficient organisation implementation, and the number of modules available and implemented by the client.

Donwood Community Aged Care Service is a residential aged care provider in Victoria that supports 105 residents in a community-based, supportive environment.

Baptcare is a faith-based not-for-profit organisation that provides residential and community care services for older people in Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia.

Message Manager flyer