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Special arrangements for subsidised welfare services and services of Social Welfare Department
     The Government has announced that it will implement targeted measures to reduce social contact and infection control measures and gradually resume more public services from March 2 in an orderly manner. A spokesperson from the Social Welfare Department (SWD) today (February 28) announced the arrangements for the welfare services subsidised by the SWD from March 2.
     Details of the arrangements are as follows:
(1) All aided child care centres, day care centres for the elderly, sheltered workshops, integrated vocational rehabilitation services centres, integrated vocational training centres and day activity centres will suspend their service delivery. These centres will, however, remain open depending on the situation to serve those in special need. Individual service users who have the need for these services may contact the centres or service units concerned in advance.
(2) Apart from (a) and (j) which are provided as normal, the other services will be provided on a limited scale as stated below and with groups and programmes suspended:
a. All residential care services;
b. Integrated Family Service Centres (only providing casework service);
c. Integrated Services Centres (only providing casework service);
d. Short-term Food Assistance Service;
e. Integrated Home Care Services (only providing meal, escort, nursing and administration of medicine services);
f. Enhanced Home and Community Care Services (only providing meal, escort, nursing and administration of medicine services);
g. Home Care Service for Persons with Severe Disabilities (only providing escort, nursing and administration of medicine services);
h. Integrated Support Service for Persons with Severe Physical Disabilities (only providing escort, nursing and administration of medicine services);
i. Visiting Medical Practitioner Service for Residential Care Homes;
j. Hotline services; and
k. Humanitarian Assistance for Non-refoulement Claimants.
     Areas within the above service units designated for public use, such as resource corners and game corners, will be temporarily closed.
(3) Centre-based services subsidised by the SWD, such as district elderly community centres, neighbourhood elderly centres, social and recreational centres for persons with disabilities, integrated children and youth services centres, children and youth centres and community centres will not be open to the public to reduce the risk of infection arising from the gathering of people. These centres will, however, provide services on a limited scale (such as meal service provided by elderly centres and standardised care need assessment for elderly services). 
(4) For other services not covered by (1) to (3) above, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) operating them may decide whether to continue to provide them under their respective Funding and Service Agreements having regard to their circumstances.
     These arrangements will continue until further notice, except for aided child care centres which will basically suspend their service delivery as stated above up to and including April 19 as class resumption in schools will be no earlier than April 20. NGOs should keep their clients informed of their specific arrangements.
     Regarding the SWD's own services, the SWD will continue to provide its services through various means. However, services which may cause the gathering of people and increase the risk of infection such as groups, large-scale programmes, resource corners and game corners, etc. will be suspended. Service users may call the hotline number 2343 2255 for enquiries.
     The SWD will continue to monitor the situation and work with stakeholders, with a view to resuming more public services for the needy as circumstances permit.
Ends/Friday, February 28, 2020
Issued at HKT 15:00
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