As Victoria’s great run with no new positive case continues, Western Health’s COVID leadership team has once again reviewed the restrictions that apply across our sites.
From today, I can announce a number of significant changes relating to movement across sites, the use of non-clinical and office spaces, and face-to-face meetings. These are detailed in the bulletin below.
First though, an update on how the new cases of community transmission in Queensland and NSW, as reported over the weekend, affect us at Western Health. Information about exposure sites is available at the Department of Health website here. As always, we request that staff ensure they complete the daily attestation prior to attending work and regularly check the Department of Health website for any updates. Any staff who identify as being at an exposure site in Greater Brisbane or Sydney are requested to follow the Department of Health directions, NOT attend work and contact COVID Staff Enquiries at firstname.lastname@example.org
As part of COVID screening at Western Health, all patients, outpatients and visitors should be screened prior to entry and asked whether they have visited Greater Brisbane since Thursday, March 11.
If a patient, outpatient or visitor discloses that they have visited Greater Brisbane since Thursday, March 11, please contact the De-isolation HMO on 8395 9048 or on switch 8345 6666 so further risk assessment can be conducted.
CHANGES TO RESTRICTIONS
Movement across sites
Staff and students are now permitted to work across, and move between, Western Health sites – however everyone will be limited to attending a maximum of two sites per day unless required by clinical exception. All staff and students will be required to complete the online Daily Staff Symptom Check and Attendance log found here before entering each new site. This information continues to be important as it would be used by our contact tracing, if required.
The use of non-clinical and office spaces
The number of people allowed into work spaces across Western Health is also being re-calculated, in line with the Chief Health Officer’s latest workplace directions. (The ‘density quotient’ for non-clinical spaces is now one person per 2m2, instead of one person per 4m2).
These changes will allow for more people to occupy non-clinical spaces, including offices, and up to 75% of staff may return to working on site.
However there is one very important guideline that remains the same – all staff are still required to maintain 1.5m physical distancing.
Staff working from home are encouraged to contact their managers in the first instance to discuss opportunities to return to working on site. Managers are requested to contact the COVID Logistics team to coordinate changes in the occupancy to spaces, for example returning to areas previously occupied or spaces now occupied by other teams. The COVID Logistics team can be contacted at Covid19-Logistics2@wh.org.au
Density quotient signage can be found on the microsite here. The COVID Logistics and COVID Response teams will be working on coordinating an update on signage across the organization.
Face-to-face gatherings that directly contribute to the provision of care or improving the quality of care are now permitted, provided physical distancing and density quotients are maintained. Examples of permitted gatherings include case conference meetings, handover meetings, family meetings, morbidity and mortality meetings and committees that contribute to the improvement of care.
Some meeting room spaces and non-clinical areas will continue to be occupied by various teams due to social distancing requirements and will not be available for the purposes of face to face meetings. Available meeting and education rooms may be booked via the EMS system up until June 30.
The EMS room booking system is now open for bookings through June 30. Given limited availability of rooms in the WHCHRE, bookings are restricted to clinical skills and face to face education that cannot be done over Zoom.
Thanks for keeping yourself updated.