- When: 24 December 2021
- Time: 2pm (TODAY)
- Where: ANMF Office, 19 Brisbane Street, Launceston
- Who: ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary Emily Shepherd
Following the Tasmanian border opening on December 15, 2021, and the return of COVID-19 to the State, the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) Tasmanian Branch is calling for a COVID-19 allowance for Tasmanian Public Sector nurses and midwives.
The ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary Emily Shepherd said today “as anticipated the re-introduction of COVID-19 on the first flight into Tasmania following the borders opening has resulted in a significant increase in pressure on those nurses, assistants in nursing and health services officers in testing clinics across the State”.
Irrespective of the health service in which nurses and midwives work, their shifts are punctuated with COVID-19 prevention measures, which involve long and arduous shifts in full PPE, which must be taken off just to have a drink of water and of course to take a break, if possible.
“The Premier, Peter Gutwein, has made a decision to open Tasmania’s borders and has reiterated that we must all learn to live with COVID-19, however, the impact that this is having on our members is incredibly significant.
“This is why we are calling for a COVID-19 allowance to recognise and value the work that nurses, midwives and assistants in nursing are doing across health in difficult environments.
“While all Tasmanians are encouraged to socially distance from others in order to protect themselves, our members tell us they are there face-to-face with positive COVID-19 cases when swabbing at testing sites, caring for them in case management facilities and in hospitals. We must recognise the stress, fatigue and social isolation that this causes, or we will see more nurses and midwives leave the sector,” said Ms Shepherd.
The ANMF has today written to the Minister for Health and requested that a COVID-19 allowance is paid to all nurses and midwives in the public sector and also that it is comparable to the Victorian entitlement of:
- i. Red Zone allowance of $60 per eight/ten-hour shift, $90 per 12-hour shift and $120 per double shift for nurses caring for patients in intensive care units, Emergency Departments, and areas with known COVID-19 patients in the hospital and community settings.
- ii. Amber Zone allowance of $30 per eight/ten-hour shift, $45 per 12-hour shift and $60 per double shift for nurses and midwives caring for non-COVID-19 patients or suspected COVID-19 patients in hospital and community settings.
“Whilst living with COVID-19 may be a challenge for many, it is incredibly challenging for our members who are now working alongside positive cases and are therefore limiting their social interactions at family gatherings and events due to fear of infecting those that they love, especially those who have vulnerable family and friends.
“The Minister and State Government must act now to ensure that our members feel valued and recognised for the roles that they have and continue to play in keeping all Tasmanians safe throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” Ms Shepherd said.
Emily Shepherd, ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary
Mobile: 0400 884 021