April 15, 2020

Today I want to thank all the staff members who have undergone retraining and reskilling to work in our intensive care, critical care and acute environments. As of yesterday, 97 people had undergone ICU refresher training, including 22 who have done both an ICU orientation shift and online training. In addition, 60 ward staff have received face-to-face training to work in ICU roles that would assist ICU nurses. These numbers are increasing every day.

Upskilling our workforce is a vital part of our COVID-19 surge planning. I’m so proud that Western Health has worked proactively to provide this training, and that we’ve had so many nurses volunteering to take this step. Some of the face-to-face sessions are shown in the photos below.

As successful as the program has been so far, we’re still looking for more staff members to sign up and we can offer immediate training to appropriate candidates. We have training programs suitable for staff with and without ICU experience, as well as nurses working in the community and sub-acute environments. Feedback to date is that the programs have been great fun and the staff feel really well supported going forward. Please read the bulletin for more details.

Well done, everyone.





Covid-19 Daily Summary

• Respiratory Assessment Clinic presentations yesterday: 75
• Numbers of individuals tested for COVID-19 at Western Health to date: 3924
• Numbers of individuals tested positive to date: 73
• Numbers of current inpatients with COVID-19: 4

Face shields

Staff working at Western Health are being provided with a re-usable face shield. Face shields protect us from droplet spread by protecting our mucous membranes. The use of face shields will reduce our risk of contracting and spreading coronavirus.

Vulnerable people in the workplace

Western Health continues to make the health and safety of staff a priority.
An updated government advice indicates that the following people are, or are likely to be, at higher risk of serious illness if they are infected with COVID-19:
• Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 50 years and older with one or more chronic medical conditions;
• People 65 years and older with chronic medical conditions;
• People 70 years and older
• People with compromised immune systems
• People who are pregnant

Western Health staff members who fit into these categories should refer to the Protecting Vulnerable Staff QRG on the microsite to find out what steps they should take to help ensure their safety in the workplace.
Managers will be contacted by People and Culture if they have employees who are 65 years and older working in their teams so they can advise them to complete the screening tool.

Staff and managers can find the screening tool that is being used to identify vulnerable people here. Once completed, People and Culture and line managers will work with vulnerable staff to ensure the safety of our employees.

ICU, Critical Care and Acute training

If you would like to join the dozens of staff who have already been upskilled or retrained to work in the intensive care, critical care and acute settings, we want to hear from you.
We can provide immediate training for appropriate candidates, both with and without ICU certification.
Details can be found in the Critical Care Refresher Information for Participants on the microsite.

If you are interested in participating in this training please email Janet Beer.

ED triage training has commenced this week and ED refresher and upskilling training will begin next week.
We are also offering supported training for those staff who may currently work in the community or sub acute environment and are keen to help in the acute environment. Please talk to your line manager.

If you are interested in participating in this upskilling training please contact Leanne Nuske.