Newsflash: North West Regional Hospital

On Wednesday 8 April 2020, the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation Tasmanian Branch (ANMF) Secretary Emily Shepherd, wrote to the North/North West CEO of the Tasmania Health Service (THS) regarding members concerns in relation to the current North West outbreak of COVID-19. Specifically, the ANMF raised the below, which are compiled along with the response from THS (italics):

  • Members are continuing to learn of more positive COVID-19 cases from their own wards/units through the media or social media via the Public Health Updates rather than from their own management area.
    This matter will be raised with the THS Emergency Operations Centre.
  • NWRH members report feeling ostracized when in the community (like at the supermarket) and their usual supports in dealing with their frustration and debriefing have largely been removed (including social gatherings after work or attending the gym). They have enquired about counselling on site that members can access at the time when feeling overwhelmed as well as possible regular times made available.
    THS are working on some formal psychological support services for staff, we should be able to get those going very soon.
  • Members in the Emergency Department (ED) report having to shower when a ventilator circuit becomes disconnected and after a shift. However, there is only two showers in the ED available to staff. Is there a possibility for portable showers like those brought in for Intensive Care Unit (ICU) staff?
    Corporate Services are arranging for some portable shower cabins to be set up in the hospital areas. We wanted to make sure that what is provided has some form of heating given the cooler weather.

The ANMF continue to press THS for a more comprehensive response and action to these matters and further updates and advice will be provided as they come to hand.

If members are concerned regarding unfair treatment in relation to these matters or if you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact our Member Support Team via membersupport@anmftas.org.au or for urgent matters phone (03) 6223 6777 or 1800 001 241 (if outside Hobart).

Please note: Due to the COVID-19 situation, our Member Support Team are now practicing social isolation strategies and working from home. Bearing this in mind, email is the preferred and fastest way of contacting them.

Download a print ready PDF of this newsflash here.

View the full COVID-19 page here

Updates correct as at 9 April 2020
Authorised by Emily Shepherd, ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary