Rest homes throughout Northland have adopted stringent checks to protect the most vulnerable from contracting Covid-19, including restricting visitor access.

All Radius sites in Northland have restricted access since Monday, in line with the government's advice to restrict visitor access to rest homes.

There are 57 residents at Radius Potter Home on Bank St in Whangārei, 53 at Baycare in Paihia and 55 at Rimu Park in Whangārei.

Mandy Beazley, facility manager at Radius Potter Home on Bank St in Whangārei, said visits have been restricted to people such as doctors and palliative care specialists.

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"These are the most vulnerable people and it's our job to protect them. So far, there's been good understanding from families who can Skype or video message our residents," she said.

Facility manager at Radius Potter Home, Mandy Beazley, says restrictions are meant to protect people most susceptible to Covid-19. Photo / John Stone
Facility manager at Radius Potter Home, Mandy Beazley, says restrictions are meant to protect people most susceptible to Covid-19. Photo / John Stone

Staff at Jane Mander Retirement Village in Kamo are checking temperatures of visitors and asking them to visit only if absolutely necessary.

The facility has more than 400 residents who compromise of 112 in the care centre, 71
serviced apartments and 183 independent homes.

"We know that older people are the most vulnerable to the coronavirus, and it is critical that we keep everyone safe. We want to make sure our villages are safe havens for our residents," David King, spokesman for Ryman Healthcare, which runs Jane Mander Retirement Village said.

He said new measures include putting on hold non-essential visits to village residents, suspension of group activities that include happy hours and exercise classes, and sporting and community events.

The village is adding a security check-in at the village gates and the reception check so that visitors can have temperature checks.

"We know these measures may be isolating for some residents. While they may cause a degree of disruption, we think it is the right thing to do in the face of this pandemic.

"We have had a great response from residents families and our teams – we are all in this together to keep Covid-19 out," King said.

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Rose Garden Rest Home on Morningside Rd in Whangārei is screening visitors to the 40-bed facility but is not in a lockdown.

Kerikeri Retirement Village has no cases of Covid-19, it's not in lockdown, and all but immediate family are barred from the care centre.

Bupa New Zealand has suspended its employees from visiting its care homes and rehabilitation sites unless they are business-critical.

It runs the Bupa Merrivale Care Home in Whangārei and Bupa Kauri Coast Care Home in Dargaville.

"We are checking and restricting access to all our care homes, retirement villages and
rehabilitation sites as per the advice of Ministry of Health and our own prudent infection prevention control protocols," spokesman Robert Walker said.