According to a source, staff at a Melbourne hospital would be ordered to wear personal protective equipment ( PPE) at all times, with all patients being handled as if they were COVID-19 positive from Friday.
The Today show reported last week that six nurses from one ward at St Vincent ‘s Hospital in Melbourne had been COVID-19 positive.
They also raised questions about management steps to prevent infection, with some nurses and all other staff advised to wear PPE and all patients admitted to hospital to be handled as positive COVID-19.
“Contact tracing is underway and close contact staff are being placed in precautionary quarantine as that process continues based on potential exposure,” they said.
“To minimise risk to our patients and staff, we have commenced asymptomatic testing of all staff who work on this ward.
“As of Thursday 30 July, this general medicine ward is now operating as a COVID-19 ward. All patients admitted to this ward only will be COVID-19 positive or suspected to have COVID-19. This does not apply to the whole hospital.”
St Vincent’s has three locations in Fitzroy and Collingwood-a private hospital is the main facility in East Melbourne.
The Department of Health and Human Services last reported on July 21 St Vincent’s where 15 cases were reported.
It follows the grim forecasts of the Victorian chief health officer between 50 and 75 Victorians could die this week from COVID-19 as the state is struggling with a second wave of the virus.
Victoria reported the worst daily rise since Thursday’s pandemic started, with 723 new infections and 13 more deaths.