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POPULATION HEALTH NEWSLETTER
Community update #6
July 2020
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We're back again with the latest edition of our community newsletter! We put this together so we can keep our community updated and help to promote health and wellbeing. 
That being said, if you have some news, info or an update that you think the community would like to hear about in the health and wellbeing space, send it through to us at pophealth@hhs.vic.gov.au

By now you've all probably heard about the increased restrictions to the metropolitan area that have been enforced. Although this won't directly impact on our community, we understand this will mean some of you won't be able to visit friends or family in that area. It's important to remember to take care of yourselves and each other during this ongoing, difficult time and ensure that we continue to check in on the most vulnerable members of our community. 

As this is likely to be our new "normal" for the foreseeable future, it's especially important to take care of our mind and bodies during this time. Maybe that means taking a little extra time for yourself this week, calling a friend, reading a book, taking a long walk in nature or reaching out to your support services. Whatever that may look like for you, remember to do it! 

For the rest of our community who may be relatively unaffected by the newest restrictions, we need to continue to do the right thing. Ensure you are following social distancing in public, keep practising hand hygiene and only socialising with restricted numbers of people. It's important we don't become complacent, so we can continue to ensure our community remains safe from COVID-19. 

Click here to find out the latest Victorian Government restrictions and make sure you are following them!
COMMUNITY HEALTH UPDATE
CHRH Community Health are continuing to provide services for our community, however we are taking extra precautions as necessary. 

We are prioritising the use of Telehealth with clients when possible, minimising face-to-face contact, to ensure safety for our staff and for visitors of the health service. If you would like to request Telehealth for your consult or find out more, please contact your clinician or the appropriate reception.     

We ask that you stay home and reschedule your appointment if feeling unwell, experiencing any symptoms or have been in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case.  

All visitors to our campuses will be required to undergo a temperature check upon arrival and asked a series of routine questions to screen for symptoms and previous travel movements, which will help to keep you and our clinicians safe. We ask that you arrive as close to your appointment time as possible, to avoid common waiting areas and to only bring a support person if necessary.

If you are concerned or unsure about your appointment, please do not hesitate to call our reception to discuss. 
Clunes Community Health - (03) 5345 9750
Creswick Community Health - (03) 5345 9100
Daylesford Community Health - (03) 5321 6550
Trentham Community Health - (03) 5421 7200
COVID-19 COMMUNITY SURVEY
 
The current COVID-19 pandemic has impacted us all in many ways.  As a result Central Highlands Rural Health is conducting a survey to learn more about how the impacts of COVID-19 are affecting the wellbeing of people across our community.  Knowing more about this will help as we seek to find positive ways to continue to support people now and into the future.   

If you are aged 18 years and over we would really appreciate you taking the time to complete this survey by August 15.   
SOMETHING TO SMILE ABOUT
As everyone is spending more and more time at home, it probably means you're missing seeing family and friends. To help with this social isolation, we teamed up some students from Daylesford Primary School to write letters to our residents at Daylesford Aged Care.
 
This week our residents received their first letter from the students and they have absolutely LOVED them! Sharon Treloar, Lifestyle Coordinator at Daylesford Aged Care, commented that the residents are enjoying the pictures and remark on the neatness of the students' handwriting. Both staff and residents are almost always having a laugh, because the kids are so sweet and sincere.
It's great to hear that the letters have really brightened the day of the residents and that they enjoy thinking of replies to the questions the kids ask. 
MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT SERVICES

The impact of COVID-19 has left no one untouched and has been extremely tough on many of us. Whether you are feeling lonely because of isolation, anxious about the risks of this virus or you are just struggling to cope with it all, there are resources and support out there for you. We want you to know that you are not alone during this time and to please reach out and seek help.

Below are some online resources, which can be a great place to start, when looking for help. Make sure to send these links through to family, friends, colleagues or anyone else to ensure that we are all looking after our mental health. 

The Victorian Government has a series of short videos from a Clinical Psychologist, giving important and helpful advice for your mental health during this time. The videos can be accessed here and focus on:
  • Sourcing trusted information
  • Routine 
  • Social isolation 
  • Support and kindness 
  • Dealing with loss of control 
Beyond Blue have developed a range of information, strategies and expert advice to help support your social and emotional wellbeing. This also includes phone and web counselling and support services where you can speak to someone about advice specific to you. The information is especially relevant to COVID-19 and can be accessed here

VicHealth has put together many tips for looking after your mental health and a range of useful tools that can be accessed online.

If you feel that you need more support than just online or would like to speak with a professional in person, please visit your GP. Your GP can discuss a Mental Health Treatment Plan with you, allowing you 10 free visits with a Psychologist or can refer you on to the right person. 
And remember if you are in an emergency or require crisis support please contact 000 or Lifeline on 13 11 14 
IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON WOMEN'S HEALTH
Gender Equity Victoria (GEN VIC) and its members have released a series of factsheets that show the significant impact of COVID-19 on women's mental health.  
Their research has found that:
  • Women are over-represented in casual and insecure employment meaning they are more likely to have lost their jobs.
  • Women are also disproportionately on the front-line with a majority of health care workers, social assistance workers, teachers and retail workers being women. This can expose them to the dual stressors of high-pressure work environments and potential infection.
  • Women have also taken on a greater share of additional care responsibilities for children, other family members and at-risk community members during self-isolation.
It's likely that many of you resonate with the data that was found. 
We want to remind everyone that now, more than ever, it is vital to take care of your own mental and physical health. Just like flight attendants remind us to “fit our own oxygen mask, before assisting those around us” it is imperative that we look after ourselves, if we are to help others. Make sure that you take some time out for yourself this week and:
  • Read a book
  • Go for a walk
  • Have a bath
  • Listen to a podcast
  • Practice mindfulness/meditation - check out Smiling Mind below!
  • Or whatever else it is that helps you to care for your mind and body.     
 
You can view the full factsheet here or by visiting the GEN VIC website.
SMILING MIND 
A mindfulness and meditation app to help bring balance to your life. 
If everything that is going on at the moment is beginning to be too much for you, why not try practising mindfulness? All it takes is 10 minutes a day and it can be done anywhere - as long as you have a quiet place! 

With programs for school, work and home as well as a Family Program, there is something for everyone! 
There are many benefits of practising mindfulness including reduced stress, better sleep quality, increased self awareness, greater ability to regulate emotions and so much more!
You can find out more and download the app here
DENTAL HEALTH WEEK


  

Dental Health Week (DHW) is a yearly campaign and this year will be run from August 3 - 9. It aims to educate Australians about the importance of maintaining good oral health and the theme for this year is "How much sugar is hiding in your trolley?" 

The focus of the campaign will be on helping Australians to 'get sugar savvy' including the recommended daily sugar consumption levels, advice on reading food labels, and the harm sugar does to our teeth.
The recommendations for DHW include:
  • Consume no more than 6 teaspoons (24 grams) of free sugar per day as recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO).  
  • Choose foods with less than 10 grams of sugar per 100 grams.
  • Look out for hidden sugars when purchasing foods and drinks.
Check out the Hidden Sugars fact sheet, which will make it easier for you when looking at a product's ingredient list. 
MEN'S HEALTH WEEK
Our team is very excited about the efforts during Men's Health Week. We want to again thank all of our Ambassadors for helping to promote men's health and wellbeing and being so open to sharing their reflections and insights. 

We're proud to say that our videos and resources were shared far and wide, with The Courier in Ballarat featuring an article about them, which you can check out here. To allow us to continue to promote health initiatives within the community, we'd really appreciate if you complete the following survey.

Even though Men's Health Week is over, we never want to stop promoting positive health and wellbeing for the men in our community. Please continue to view and share the videos and resources that were developed. 
THE SHED WIRELESS
The Australian Men's Shed Association release a regular podcast - The Shed Wireless
The podcast discusses all things shed related, tips and tricks for staying healthy and looking after your mind and much more. Each week there are new guests including men from Sheds all over Australia, as well as experts from different areas or others just in for a chat. 
You can check out the podcasts here
SOCIAL SUPPORT HUB
COVID-19 has had a significant impact on everyone within our communities, with many of us experiencing feelings of loneliness and disconnection, as we spend more time at home.  

Older people may be finding this more difficult than others, as many may not be familiar with technology and the applications that are out there to help them stay connected. 
A Social Support Hub has been created at the Victorian Government Seniors Online website which is being regularly updated with information and links to service and supports in your area. 

The Department of Health also has two dedicated telephone support services to assist older Australians during COVID-19:
  • The Older Persons COVID-19 Support Line provides information and support to senior Australians, their families and carers. To use this service, call 1800 171 866
  • The Friends Line offers a free and anonymous telephone service providing support to senior Australians through the opportunity to chat with a volunteer. To use this service, call 1800 4 CHATS (1800 424 287)
If there are people in your life who aren't receiving this newsletter, make sure to pass on these contact details. 
 
FOOD RESOURCES 
With some restrictions tightening up again, there has been a second wave of panic-buying. It's important to remember, exactly what we learnt from earlier this year, that supermarket shelves will always remain stocked and it's vital that we only buy what we need, not excess! When you panic-buy and the shelves begin to empty, it is our most vulnerable community members who suffer the most. Unable to afford to buy in bulk, due to finances or storage or an inability to get to the shops. 

If you are struggling with sourcing food, or need a little extra help providing a meal for you family, check out this food relief resource. We have collected information from a number of shops and suppliers who can provide assistance. Make sure that you pass this resource on to those within our community who might really benefit from this information.

For access and information related to food relief and other services you can contact:
  • Hepburn Shire Council's Relief Centre on (03) 5348 2306
  • Macedon Ranges Recovery Operation Centre on (03) 5422 0237 
STRESS AND EATING
2020 has been a long and tough year for everyone and it's not over yet. As we continue to follow restrictions and miss out on some of the things we love, it's important to take the time to look after our body. 

Olivia, our Dietitian here at Central Highlands Rural Health (CHRH), gives us some advice on keeping a healthy diet while we may be feeling stressed and some tips on practising mindful eating. 
You can check out both videos here or on our CHRH Facebook page. 



VOLUNTEER SHOWCASE
COVID-19 has meant that many of our volunteers have been unable to help out, due to restrictions and the risks involved. CHRH values the work our volunteers do and the skills and knowledge they possess. 

This is why our fabulous Volunteer Engagement Manager, J Cawton, has created a Virtual Volunteers Concert. This includes a series of videos of instruments, singing or other skills that are being showcased on our Vimeo account. We'd love for you to check them out, so you can see the numerous talents of our wonderful volunteer community!
SPICY PUMPKIN SOUP
Serves: 4
Ingredients:
1 tsp canola oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp curry powder
3 cups pumpkin, peeled and chopped into 2cm cubes
1 small sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 2cm cubes
2 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped into 2cm cubes
1 apple, peeled, cored and quartered
1 tsp reduced-salt vegetable stock
1 L water
4 tbs low-fat natural or Greek yoghurt, to serve
4 slices wholemeal or multigrain bread, to serve
 
Method:
1.    Heat oil in a large pot and fry onion, garlic, cumin and curry powder for 2 minutes.
2.    Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are just soft.
3.    Use a stick blender, normal blender or food processor to blitz the soup till smooth. Add more water if you prefer a runnier soup.
4.    Serve with a slice of toast and a spoonful of yoghurt.

Comments:
•    Roast the veggies in the oven first for a sweeter, more intense flavour.  
•    If you are making the soup to freeze, use less water and make a very thick soup. When cooled, put a big ladleful in a freezer bag, squeeze out all the air and then freeze. To defrost, put in the microwave or a pot with a ladleful of water. 
To find this and other tasty recipes head to Live Lighter.
Remember to drink water regularly (approximately 6-8 glasses a day) to stay healthy and hydrated and try to eat a variety of 5 portions of vegetables and 2 of fruit each day.
COMMUNITY IMPACT GRANTS
Does your community organisation provide projects or programs in any of the following?
  • Early Childhood
  • Youth Success
  • Housing Security
  • Food Security 
If yes, you may be able to apply for a Community Impact Grant, from The Ballarat Foundation. A range of grants are available which will impact and benefit the Ballarat and surrounding local government areas. 
For more information and funding guidelines visit here
Applications close Friday July 24.  
RESPIRATORY TESTING CLINICS
Central Highlands Rural Health (CHRH) continues to operate two COVID-19 respiratory testing clinics at our Daylesford and Kyneton campuses. 
To receive the test for COVID-19 please call ahead and speak to one of our staff members on:
Daylesford - (03) 5321 6654 
Kyneton - (03) 5422 9900 

If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, no matter how mild, you should seek advice and get tested. 
  • Fever
  • Chills or sweats 
  • Cough 
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Runny nose
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste
In certain circumstances headache, muscle soreness, stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea may also be considered. 
To get further advice, contact the 24-hour coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398.
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Central Highlands Rural Health 
Integrated Primary Care 
13 Hospital St
Daylesford 3460

Any views or opinions presented in this email are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Central Highlands Rural Health. 

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Central Highlands Rural Health · 13 Hospital Street · Daylesford, Vic 3460 · Australia

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