Update Operations Bulletin – 18 Dec

December 18, 2020

In addition to reviewing this bulletin, all staff are asked to read the bulletin linked here, from the Victorian Government. It was released late this afternoon Fri 18 Dec.

Given the rapidly evolving nature of the NSW Northern Beaches outbreak, Western Health is putting in place the following strategies to keep our staff and visitors safe:

Any staff who were in the Northern Beaches region or Greater Sydney on or since Friday 11 December 2020 are asked to not attend work and contact COVID Staff Enquiries at whscovid-19staffclinicenquiries@wh.org.au.

The current DHHS advice is that people should get tested and quarantine for 14 days from the last date that they were in the Northern Beaches or Greater Sydney area.

Information of specific exposure sites is available at this NSW Government link.

As part of COVID Screening, all patients, outpatients and visitors should be screened prior to entry and asked whether they have visited the Greater Sydney or Northern Beaches areas since the 11th December.

All inpatients who have visited the NSW Northern Beaches region or Greater Sydney since 11 December should be quarantined in a single room for 14 days since they last visited those areas.

If a patient, outpatient or visitor discloses that they have visited NSW Northern Beaches or Greater Sydney since 11 December, please contact the De-isolation HMO on 8395 9048 or on switch 8345 6666 so further risk assessment can be conducted.

We encourage any staff members who have recently visited NSW and may have concerns or are showing even the mildest symptoms to attend for testing at Sunshine Hospital Respiratory Assessment Clinic. Operating hours for the Sunshine Hospital Respiratory Assessment Clinic are 10am-5.30pm, 7 days a week. Western Health staff may continue to access the clinic via the Pod 1 entrance via the main hospital (outside lifts 16 and 17 of the Acute Services Building).

We appreciate that many staff may have travel plans to NSW over the holiday period and that the current situation will be creating some anxiety. Those intending to go to NSW hotspots should be aware of the significant risk at present and that they may need to quarantine on return to Victoria. We would advise people to keep themselves informed of the changing advice regarding travel from DHHS. Additional information can be found on the dhhs website at this link.

We also want to remind everyone of the appropriate use of PPE. Masks must be worn in all clinical and public areas across all sites. Masks are optional in administrative areas where you can retain a minimum of 1.5M physical distance. All visitors are required to wear masks.

Eye protection is still required as part of standard precautions, for staff working with patients suspected of COVID-19 and for staff working with patients undergoing aerosol generating procedures or aerosol generating behaviours.