The managing director of a nursing home in the Murrumbidgee Local Health District says she would like to see residents taken straight to hospital if they are diagnosed with coronavirus.
Lutheran Aged Care's Wendy Rocks believes it could help prevent in-home transmission if facilities were able to swiftly transfer virus cases.
"My own personal view, which ... I have expressed to the health authorities is that I think it would be very beneficial if in fact we were able to transfer the first couple of positive people to hospital immediately," she said.
"But that's a work in progress and every state has its philosophy on that."
Mrs Rocks oversees an Albury facility, home to 122 residents, where the MLHD has carried out its simulation plan for a COVID-19 outbreak.
Wagga-based MLHD acting executive director of medical services Len Bruce praised Lutheran Aged Care's "absolutely brilliant" outbreak plan, which includes moving residents diagnosed with the virus to an acute care isolation unit set up in one of its villages, in consultation with health authorities.
Dr Bruce said residential aged care patients were better managed in their facilities because of their "complex needs".
"But once again if they are unwell and require hospitalisation, they will be hospitalised, most definitely, if that is in their wishes," he said.
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"If a patient has an advanced care directive where they do not want to be admitted to a hospital, we will not override the wishes of the patient."
Mrs Rocks said the simulation involved coordinating with health authorities, including the MLHD and NSW Health, for a scenario where three residents were diagnosed with the virus.
"It was very useful and, from my perspective, probably a first in regards to that sort of cross agency communication," she said.
"Which is so essential if we were to have an outbreak."
A NSW Health spokesperson said nursing home residents were able to be treated in hospital.
"Residents of aged care facilities continue to have the right, as do other people in the community, to access public hospital services based on their clinically assessed need," the spokesperson said.
Wagga Seniors Rights Service advocate Tammy Cabban said there were lessons in the Newmarch House outbreak earlier this year, when 71 staff and residents of the Sydney nursing home caught the virus.
"The biggest one was communication for us. If they can provide additional staff for the purpose of contacting family. And if there are clinical concerns or medical concerns, that they have staff available to feed back to families [and] residents."
Dr Bruce said the MLHD would support both public and privately operated aged care providers to manage an outbreak.
"I have complete faith in our team and I can reassure the community that we are as prepared as we can be," he said.
In NSW, 29 COVID-19 deaths have been linked to nursing homes.