You will by now be aware that a 6-day ‘circuit breaker’ period of restrictions will become effective across South Australia as of midnight tonight. The details on the restrictions can be found on the government’s COVID-19 website.
We recognise that this will obviously have an impact on our community, our valued workforce and on our services. Your health and wellbeing and that of the South Australian community are a priority and I understand that this will be a challenging time for all us as we balance work and our own private arrangements.
This email is fairly lengthy, however we felt it was important to provide you with this information.
COVID-19 live stream
This afternoon we held a COVID-19 live stream update for all staff and we were joined online by more than 1100 staff. To view the recording of this session, click here.
We received a large number of questions from staff during the session and unfortunately we were not able to get to them all. We will do our best to address all of these in the coming days however we encourage you to speak with your manager who may be able to provide further answers. We plan to do another livestream on Friday and will provide the details for this session tomorrow.
Contact tracing and COVID-19 testing for those who have interacted with the Woodville Pizza Bar
This is particularly important for those of you who may have who visited or got takeaway (including delivery) from the Woodville Pizza Bar, 58 Woodville Road, Woodville on 6 – 16 November. If this applies to you, please ensure that you immediately self-quarantine, wear a mask and present for COVID-19 testing alerting staff of your interaction with the pizza bar.
If you are in this group, please also advise your manager and complete the self reporting form.
The SA Health website features an extensive list of areas which require people who have visited to either self quarantine, present for COVID-19 testing or to monitor for symptoms. Please ensure you review this page to identify if you have visited the identified locations and act appropriately.
Wearing masks at CALHN facilities
Masks are now required in all areas outside of the home and this includes CALHN sites.
All CALHN staff in the workplace are to wear a workplace supplied surgical mask (level 1 mask in non-clinical areas) while on site and when they are unable to adhere to 1.5m physical distancing.
In the live stream Lesley said that it is fine for people who need a mask to safely make their way home and back to work in case they were unable to go to the shop. Please do the right thing and only take what you genuinely need for this purpose – you are trusted to do the right thing.
Staff who require additional PPE in accordance with their clinical exposure are to adhere to the PPE Matrix.
All visitors to CALHN sites will also be asked to wear a mask while on site.
Our healthcare worker and infection control team have put together a helpful fact sheet on wearing a mask.
Visitors will be limited into our sites, however we will still allow visitation for compassionate reasons and for when they are critical to care. This includes for end of life visits, where we are providing young people with treatment and they require their parent or in an emergency situation. Clinical program delivery managers are able to make this decision and are asked to notify the screening staff before the visitors arrive.
Working from home
Non-patient facing staff that are not required to the essential operations of CALHN are required to stay home from tomorrow in line with the Premier’s directions. If you are unsure whether you should be onsite or working from home please confirm with your manager.
If you are working from home, please complete a ‘working from home’ form as soon as possible (even if you have previously completed one).
Physical distancing and meetings
Wherever possible staff are encouraged to limit face to face meetings and use Microsoft Teams. In addition, please ensure that physical distancing should be maintained by applying the 1 person per 4 square metre rule in all areas including meeting rooms.
Healthcare worker testing
We have had a number enquiries about healthcare worker testing for COVID-19 and I share with you the advice provided by the Chief Public Health Officer this morning that priority is given to:
- those showing symptoms of COVID-19
- those who have been to any of the locations listed and have developed symptoms
- those directed for testing by CCBD.
If you do not have symptoms, have not had close contact with a confirmed case, or have not frequented any of the locations at the times listed, then it is recommended you do not get a test unless you develop any COVID-19 symptoms.
If you have had close contact with any identified casual contacts from the cluster, you can continue to work in your regular duties provided that you remain asymptomatic and there is full compliance to SA Health self-quarantine criteria.
Employees that show symptoms of COVID-19 are not permitted to attend the workplace, or if already in the workplace must notify your manager and leave immediately.
You will need to self-report using the self-isolation reporting form if you:
- are unwell and are exhibiting symptoms associated with COVID-19; or
- have been tested for COVID-19 and are awaiting results; or
- have returned from interstate or overseas (see criteria above); or
- have had close contact with a positive COVID-19 case; or
- have been advised or directed to self-isolate or be tested for COVID-19
The latest advice is now for self-isolation at home to the maximum extent practicable for employees who are:
- 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; or
- People with compromised immune systems.
Managers should in addition refer to the Australian Department of Health website for the most current list of chronic medical conditions which may be deemed high risk.
Managers are to enable self-isolation wherever possible and provide, where appropriate, access to work from home arrangements. Where it is not practicable and appropriate to work from home, COVID-19 special leave with pay will be applied. If COVID-19 special leave with pay is exhausted, access to the employee’s own leave entitlements will be provided to enable the employee to stay at home.
Where a vulnerable employee is delivering essential services, a risk assessment must be undertaken. Risk needs to be assessed and mitigated with consideration of the characteristics of the worker, the workplace and the work. Managers must ensure appropriate mitigation of any identified risks as far as is reasonably practicable.
We would like to reassure you everyone that we have enough PPE. We have many masks available including nearly 2 million N95 masks in the distribution centre.
As of today, we have 52.2 days of N95 masks, 37.3 days of surgical L3 masks, 89 days of eye protection and 14 days of surgical gowns available on site.
We also have 1,657,240 N95 masks, 12,258,610 surgical L3 masks, 184,211 eye protection and 825,710 surgical gowns available on site.
We also have a further 7-day supply of PPE in a secure location that can be accessed on request of the IMT should we see a sudden increase in demand.
We have been working really hard to ensure CALHN healthcare workers from high risk areas are fitted to an available P2/N95 respirator mask. Current fit testing compliance within CALHN high risk areas is: RAH is 78% The Queen Elizabeth Hospital 72% and SA Pathology 39.%.
SA Pathology are currently on boarding a large number of new employees and we are prioritising fit testing accordingly.
Fit testing plan:
Staff only fit tested to these marks are considered a HIGH priority for mask fit testing:
- 3M 1870
- 3M 1870+ aura
- Halyard / Kimberley Clark Small
- ProShield Small
Staff only fit tested to these masks are considered a MEDIUM priority:
- 3M 8210 – Manufacturer expired but approved for use until the end of November, likely to extend further
- 3M 8110S- Manufacturer expired but approved for use until the end of November, likely to extend further
- 3M 1860S – low stock
- Halyard/ Kimberley Clark Regular
- ProShield Medium
Staff fit tested to these masks do not require further testing:
- Detmold brand Small, Regular, Large
- 3M 1860
To book appointments please contact CALHN Clinical Worker Health:
RAH: Monday to Friday from 0800-1630hrs – 707 42450 / 0434 892 282
TQEH: Monday to Friday from 0900 – 1700hrs – 8222 7642 / 0423 824 010
RAH / TQEH Mask Fit testing email: Health.CALHNMaskFitTesting@sa.gov.au
Food outlets at the RAH
Our plan is to continue to make food available onsite via the food retailers, however this is subject to changes as it may be difficult for them to maintain supplies. We will communicate any changes as they occur.
Movement between LHN’s / sites
There is currently no restriction on movement between LHN’s or between sites however a common sense and risk assessment approach should be adopted to minimise unnecessary across site travel.
We would like to again remind you that you can find the latest information on our COVID-19 staff portal. Our team updates this information regularly and is a great source of information and resources for staff.
CALHN COVID-19 Command