As this unprecedented situation unfolds, we are focused on three things:
- The health and welfare of our team and people participating in Maybo training
- Our ability to continue to support our clients, colleagues and suppliers in all scenarios
- Helping our clients plan a way forward for training as restrictions ease and to adapt to a new normal with the opportunities this brings
Online certified training
With particular pressure on staff resources, any time for learning is going to be hard to find. The priority areas include:
- Training new starters
- Preparing the workforce for return to operations / delivering restricted service
- Maintaining critical knowledge and skills (refreshers)
There are a number of ways we can help organisations provide critical training including online inductions and refreshers, plus remote support to services with coaching and problem-solving.
Online learning provides a flexible option through one or a combination of the following:
eLearning: Our interactive and comprehensive eLearning courses provide a good theory baseline for new starters and a valuable refresher training for existing staff.
Virtual Classroom: Selected Maybo programmes can be delivered in a virtual classroom led by a Maybo trainer. This comprises of a structured delivery with two-way audio and video interaction i.e. a more formal and robust approach than conventional webinar-based CPD.
We recommend a blended approach of eLearning for underpinning knowledge, followed by a shorter virtual classroom session to apply this learning and build understanding.
In some sectors, Maybo can offer full certification of theory-based (non-PI) training delivered through a combination of eLearning and virtual classroom inputs.
Training in higher-risk settings
The above options help with developing and refreshing knowledge and understanding but do not fully address the risks of staff being deployed in services that sometimes use physical interventions as a last resort in crisis situations.
In the current (COVID-19) circumstances conventional in-person training requires compelling justification, yet may be necessary (with precautions) for new staff being placed in high-risk settings. Training is just one element as risks can be further mitigated through risk assessed operational deployment with suitable control measures in place.
Guidance on the use of PPE in crisis situations where physical interventions are needed has been produced by the excellent National Association of Psychiatric Intensive Care Units.
Maintaining competencies and recertification of existing staff
In the current crisis, it is a matter for each organisation to decide training priorities and policy based on its assessment of risks and needs. The primary focus for many employers is ensuring new starters are trained as well as possible before being placed in higher-risk roles and settings.
As the crisis extends and existing staff fall due for refresher training, employers can help maintain knowledge and skills using a combination of eLearning and local structured practice. Formal refresher training can then resume once safe to do so.
Certified training that includes physical skills can only be delivered via conventional in-person training, skills can, however, be temporarily maintained through local structured practice.
While structured practice need only involve small groups of staff who already work closely together, it still carries inherent risks of COVID:19 infection and therefore needs careful consideration and risk-based justification. It can offer a temporary option for maintaining competencies in higher-risk settings during the crisis, should formal refresher training courses be deemed too risky.
If structured practice is to be undertaken, it should be run in a way that minimises risks of infection as far as possible in line with current Government COVID-19 Guidance. Maybo clients can obtain guidance from their Account Manager.
We appreciate that in-house trainers may be re-deployed in the current circumstances, but wherever possible we will assist organisations in maintaining their knowledge and skills. This is important so that service-based trainers can provide coaching and structured practice in their own services to maintain staff skills.
Active trainers who are due recertification for physical intervention programmes during the COVID-19 crisis can apply for a temporary extension, subject to conditions.
Reducing risk during in-person training and structured practice
At this time, some organisations have classified Maybo training as essential or 'operationally critical' and require a minority of scheduled courses to continue to run. In such cases, the following measures should be taken to minimise exposure to course participants and those they come into contact with:
- Participants should be notified in advance that they should not attend if they are displaying coronavirus symptoms.
- Participation is voluntary and each person should only participate in training if they are comfortable doing so.
- On the day of the course, participants should be asked if they have any symptoms before entering the training environment.
- If an individual displays symptoms during training, the trainer should notify the course organiser and await instruction.
- Training venues should be cleaned before and after each training event.
- There must be facilities for all participants to wash their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub before, during and after training, and doing so should be encouraged at regular intervals and available at all times.
- Larger venues, smaller group sizes and good ventilation may help reduce the risk of transmission.
Where working in close proximity with others is an unavoidable part of a course, such as during the practice of physical skills, the following measures may reduce the risk of transmission:
- Where possible, minimise the number of other people each person has contact with. For example, with small group sizes and ensuring participants maintain the same practice-partners throughout the training.
- All participants should wash their hands before and after each practice session.
- Use of face masks by all participants may help reduce the risk of transmission.
Further advice can be found:
We will continue to adapt our response and planning based on guidance issued by the Australian government, the New Zealand government and the World Health Organisation. The Australian Government dedicated Health Information Line, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1800 020 080. Please refer to your State and Territory for specific guidance and restrictions.
For further information, please do not hesitate to contact us.