Good afternoon all,
In today’s bulletin, I have some important messages about the coming deadline for the mandatory third dose for the COVID vaccine, consent around access to the Australian Immunisation Register, as well as a vaccination update for staff at Bacchus Marsh and Melton.
I’d like to also take this opportunity to remind you that if you’re symptomatic, you cannot come to work. Instead, you’re encouraged to get a PCR test at the Sunshine COVID Testing Clinic as soon as possible. Our COVID Response team has reported several instances of staff returning a negative rapid antigen test, only to return a positive PCR test. That’s why it’s very important to get a PCR test if you have any symptoms. Our COVID testing clinics are listed on the Coronavirus microsite. Staff who test positive are also reminded to report their result through the survey here.
Executive Director Operations (Acting)
Final deadline mandatory third dose - 29 March
A reminder that the deadline for staff who became eligible to receive their third dose after 12 January is 29 March, less than a week away. We have about 500 staff who are yet to provide evidence of receiving their third dose at a non-Western Health site or evidence of a medical exemption. This evidence must be provided by 29 March, otherwise these staff will not be permitted to work as per the Pandemic Orders.
Western Health will be contacting affected staff by SMS to remind them of the deadline and the action they need to take. I’d also like to ask managers to look at the MAP2.0 COVID Vaccination Status report and remind affected staff personally.
Further information about where to get vaccinated, how to provide evidence of your vaccination status or medical exemption, and providing consent to access AIR is below.
Where to get vaccinated
- Western Health staff can make a booking or walk in to any of our vaccination hubs
- A staff pop-up clinic is being held tomorrow (Thursday) at Williamstown Hospital from 9.30am-3.30pm, and Friday at Footscray Hospital (Mavis Mitchell Room) from 9am-3pm.
- Many GPS and pharmacists also provide COVID-19 vaccination services.
How to provide evidence of your vaccination status or medical exemption
- Advice on providing evidence of your third dose at a non-Western Health site can be found on the microsite
- If you have a medical exemption, please provide a copy of your COVID digital certificate to your manager who will forward a copy to your People and Culture Business Partner for recording.
Consent to access Australian Immunisation Register
For Western Health staff who have received their third dose at a non-Western Health vaccination centre, as an alternative to uploading their Immunisation History Statement from Medicare Online, staff may consent to Western Health accessing their Australian Immunisation Register record. Recent Victorian public health orders require healthcare employers such as Western Health to collect and record vaccination information in relation to employees.
Providing this consent confirms Western Health can legitimately access the staff member’s Australian Immunisation Register record to note the details of their COVID-19 vaccination status including their third dose, and update our records. To provide this consent, please complete this survey.
Otherwise, you are able to continue to send your Immunisation History Statement from Medicare Online, together with your name (as it appears on your pay slip) and your employee number to COVIDVaccination@wh.org.au
Bacchus Marsh and Melton vaccination status
For Western Health staff who work at Bacchus Marsh and Melton, as we have recently moved to the Western Health payroll. This means that all immunisation records have also moved to Cohort – which is Western Health’s secure staff health medical record. This is Western Health’s ‘source of truth’ for staff health, including immunisation and vaccination status. Cohort has extremely tight access controls, ensuring staff health details are kept secure, safe and private.
As well as documenting COVID vaccination status ahead of the 29 March deadline, we are also wanting to use this opportunity to ensure that all staff that work at Bacchus Marsh and Melton have an accurate and up-to-date record of their entire immunisation and vaccination status in Cohort.
To facilitate this, a text messages are being sent asking staff via a survey whether they consent to Western Health accessing their Australian Immunisation Register record. Providing this consent confirms Western Health can legitimately access the staff member’s Australian Immunisation Register record to note the details of your vaccination status to update our records in Cohort.
If you do not wish to consent, alternatively you may upload your Immunisation History Statement from Medicare Online, via the same survey.