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Multilingual older persons COVID-19 support line closes

13 Aug 2021

The Multilingual older persons COVID19 support line has completed its funded timeframe of six months and closed on the 31 July. The line operated between February and July 2021 and was funded by the federal Department of Health.

Thanks to stakeholder support the line was instrumental in providing older culturally and linguistically diverse people with a service that emphasised connection, listening and a space for older people to express their experiences. People could explain in their own language their circumstances and seek information on the questions and concerns they had over COVID-19 and aged care services more broadly.  
 
This program model has highlighted the need for multilingual workforce and programs to support language barriers. This is most evident in the conversations and support provided by multilingual workers manning the phone lines, and the recurring and returning calls from older people via word-of-mouth recommendations.

“Although it is a shame that the support line has reached the end of its funding period,” said Cecilia Chiolero, PICAC NT Program Manager for COTA NT, “We have published information in language to our website for the CaLD community around COVID-19, aged care, dementia and health services. If anyone needs help accessing information in language, interpreter or translation services, then they should contact me on 08 8941 1004.”

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Media contact: Cecilia Chiolero, PICAC NT Program Manager, COTA NT  08 8941 1004

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