Epidemic-Pandemic Program Continuity: No-Contact Delivery Procedure

To reduce the spread of communicable disease during an epidemic or pandemic by reducing contact with the clients and their meals by delivery volunteers (Part I). To maintain contact with clients during the No-Contact Delivery Procedure and to keep volunteers engaged in the program who are no longer helping due to fear of contraction or reduced volunteer hours (Part II).


Part I: No Contact Delivery Procedure

Upon notification of a local epidemic or a global pandemic, New Dawn Meals on Wheels is to immediately:

  • Implement the Emergency Meal Production Procedure.
  • Contact clients to notify them of the new procedures including the Emergency Meal Production Procedure and No-Contact Delivery Procedure and instruct them to hang a bag from their door to receive their meals.
  • Contact the volunteers to notify them of the new procedures and staff and volunteer social distancing of at least 6 feet.
  • Follow the steps of the No Contact Delivery Procedure:
    • Protect fabric handles of insulated delivery bags with plastic wrap.
    • Bundle pre-packaged and chilled meals for each client into large paper bags, label with the client’s name, and sort meals into thermal insulated delivery bags according to route sheets.
    • Include in the delivery bags enough pairs of latex gloves for each delivery on the route sheet, a small paper bag to dispose of used latex gloves in, and several plastic bags in case a client forgets to hang a bag on their door.
    • Volunteers should carry disinfectant wipes in their vehicles to wipe down door handles, steering wheels, gear shifts, seat belts, and other contact points in the vehicle before and after delivery.
    • Volunteers will meet a member of the New Dawn Meals On Wheels staff at the entrance to The Convent (170 George Street, Sydney) where the bag full of meals will be handed off to the volunteer.
    • Volunteers will then place their bag of meals in the trunk of their car to avoid the spread of germs through regular respiration.
    • Volunteers arrive at their first delivery destination, put on a pair of clean gloves, then deliver the meal to the bag hanging on the client’s door or another agreed-upon spot.
    • Volunteers then knock on the client’s door and return to their car or stand at least 2 meters from the client’s door while they wait to see if the client answers.
    • Volunteers will then remove their used gloves and dispose of them in the paper bag in the car.
    • This process should be repeated for every stop on the delivery route.
    • The paper bag of used gloves should then be properly disposed of at the end of the route.
    • Volunteers should inform the office if a client does not answer their door or phone or if they appear to be in distress.
    • Volunteers should inform New Dawn Meals on Meals staff if they can return delivery bags at the end of their route or not, and make arrangements to do so, as delivery bags are limited.

Part II: Emergency Client Phone Tree

Upon notification of a local epidemic or a global pandemic, New Dawn Meals on Wheels is to immediately:

  • Institute the Emergency Client Phone Tree Procedure for volunteers to phone and chat with clients who may be socially isolated during the state of emergency and who would normally have face-to-face interaction with our volunteers before the implementation of the No Contact Delivery Procedure.
  • Send out an email to volunteers to gauge interest in participating in the Emergency Phone Tree program.
  • Contact clients to also gauge interest in participating in the program.
    • If a client is interested, they should be contacted 2-3 times per week by their volunteer.
    • If a client is not interested, the client should still be contacted at least once a week to make sure they are not in need of any assistance.
  • Use Emergency Phone Tree Template to send call lists around to each volunteer so that they can track their conversations with each client and note if any seem to be in distress.
  • If a volunteer is worried about a client’s mental or physical welfare they should notify the New Dawn Meals on Wheels office immediately so that their emergency contact can be reached by a New Dawn Meals on Wheels staff member.

Last updated: March 26, 2020 — Version 1

Related Policies

Epidemic-Pandemic Program Continuity: Meal Production

Contact Info

For more information on this or any other New Dawn Meals on Wheels policy, please contact:

Kathleen Whelan
Program Coordinator, New Dawn Meals on Wheels
[email protected]