26 September 2023

‘Care Army’ to wage war on virus

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A COVID-19 ‘Care Army’ to support Queensland’s seniors during the health crisis has been established, to be led by a panel of representatives from the State’s leading public and private senior care bodies.

Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk said the risk of serious illness from COVID-19 increased with age and the Government was mobilising the Care Army to protect up to a million seniors.

“Queensland’s community spirit always shines through in times of crisis, as it did when the Mud Army went into action after the 2011 floods,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The Care Army may operate differently because of health and safety restrictions, but the spirit and effect remain the same.”

The Premier said the new COVID-19 Seniors Panel would coordinate the work of the Care Army.

Ms Palaszczuk said the Panel would be led by the Minister for Innovation, Kate Jones and include mong its membership the Director General of the Department of Innovation and Tourism Industry Development, Damien Walker; the Director General of the Department of Communities, Clare O’Connor; the Department’s Deputy Director General, Barb Philips; and the Deputy Director General of Smart Services Queensland, Andrew Spina.

Ms Jones said she had already started working with Queensland Health, community organisations, supermarkets and pharmacies.

“When the Premier asked me to do this job I jumped at the chance because it’s so critical,” Ms Jones said.

Ms Palaszczuk said the Community Recovery Hotline was being expanded with a free call on 1800 173 349 to link seniors and other vulnerable Queenslanders to essential services and support.

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