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Federal Aged Care Minister Richard Colbeck will give evidence to an inquiry into the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

There have been 800 cases of COVID-19 in aged care facilities nationally so far, with 136 residents dying.

As well, there have been 54 cases recorded at in-home care, including five deaths.

Senator Colbeck is one of a number of high-profile witnesses to front the Senate committee on Tuesday, along with the acting Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly and head of the health department Professor Brendan Murphy.

The committee will also speak with Janet Anderson, the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commissioner.

Last Friday, the commissioner wrote to aged care service providers to say it would be launching spot checks of infection controls and the use of personal protective equipment, with priority put on greater Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire.

Where aged care staff were found not to be following appropriate practices the commission would consider sanctions, the commissioner warned.

A special response centre has been set up in Victoria to deal with the identification of cases in aged care, as well as the testing of staff and residents.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Health Minister Greg Hunt, Prof Kelly and Prof Murphy held a hook-up on Sunday to discuss the situation in aged care.

Labor has called for greater federal government action to deal with the “horror show” in aged care.

As well, the royal commission into aged care has expressed its concern at the many deaths from COVID-19 in residential facilities and began looking at the specific issue in May.