During Operation COVID-19 Assist, nearly 50 ADF personnel provided support to eight residential aged care facilities across Tasmania.

Personnel provided support, including facility maintenance, social and emotional support and other administrative duties. They also assisted with tasks usually performed by aged care staff, such as food delivery services and personal protective equipment distribution.

Aged care facility manager Fiona Lawson said the teams providing the support, which began in Hobart on February 24 this year, were a breath of fresh air.

“The residents were very excited. We’ve got some veterans who were ecstatic,” Ms Lawson said.

“They were received well by both the residents and staff alike.’’

Before starting work, ADF personnel received appropriate training and induction to be able to best support and assist existing aged care staff as required

Royal Australian Air Force Pilot Officer Ruth Staer said it was a joy contributing to the operation.

“One of the highlights of my time in the facility was putting a smile on the residents' faces with the lifestyle support. They are just so grateful we are here,” Pilot Officer Staer said.

The teams deployed to Tasmania mainly provided non-clinical support.