NALHN Staff information during COVID-19

Vaccination for NALHN employees, contractors, students, and volunteers

  • COVID-19 and Influenza vaccinations can be received on the same day.
  • Eligibility for COVID-19 vaccines – Booster doses are now available for people 18 years and over and it must be 6 months since either contracting COVID-19 OR last vaccination.
    • Staff Health can assist with eligibility criteria.
  • Please note that Employee number and Medicare Card details are mandatory fields on the forms.
  • Vaccination evidence will be entered into CHRIS21 and the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR). Evidence will be visible in your MyGov account and via HR21 within 24-28 hours of vaccination.
  • All staff are encouraged to ensure they are up to date with their vaccinations.

Testing and results  

Staff MUST undertake a RAT at the commencement of any symptoms.

  • (Symptoms include runny or blocked nose, sore throat, aches and pains, cough, feeling more tired than usual, headache, loss of or change in taste and smell, loss of appetite or nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea (less than 4 times per day), fever or temperature above 37.5 degrees Celsius, shakes or shivers, dizziness or light-headedness, mild shortness of breath when walking briskly, upstairs or coughing).

If the RAT is positive, you are deemed to be COVID-positive:

  • You do not require a follow-up PCR (unless directed to by Staff Health certain circumstances may apply).

  • Report to your line manager to discuss work arrangements and refer to the NALHN Staff COVID-19 testing and surveillance table (PDF) for requirements. Refer to column 1 for updated isolation requirements.

  • Do not attend the workplace for 5 days for the purpose of undertaking employment-related duties.

  • Report your result using the online form.

 If the RAT is negative (and you have symptoms)

Accessing tests and contacts 

  • Staff should ask their line manager for RAT tests.
  • Staff Health can supply Managers with Oracle ordering details for RAT tests.
  • RAT/PCR testing will continue to be utilised for wards/units in response to a localised internal COVID outbreak.
  • Staff Health can provide staff directly with RATs and PCRs (when required).
  • The DNC office at the LMH and ModH both have RAT and PCR stock for afterhours access.
  • For staff that are directed to undertake a Self-swab PCR, the drop box remains available 24/7 on the outside wall of the LMH SA Pathology building (enter the carpark from Haydown Rd, the box is on the side wall of the building).

Close contacts

All employees, contractors, students on placement and volunteers who are close contacts should refer to the NALHN Staff COVID-19 testing and surveillance table (PDF) for requirements.

At work

COVID-19/Viral Respiratory/Cold/Gastro and Flu symptoms - Staff must not attend work whilst symptomatic at any time.

Q. When working across different networks, which rules do I follow?
A. Staff will need to adhere to the rules of the site where they are working. Refer to the local LHN or service COVID-19 protocols.

Hand hygiene

All staff must use the hand sanitiser that is available at all NALHN entry points. Hand Hygiene must also be performed as per the 5 moments for hand hygiene in the clinical area.

Masks and other PPE

To protect yourself and others the general use of universal surgical masks is recommended but not mandatory. 

In certain circumstances (COVID-positive and close contacts for example) staff may be required to wear a surgical mask for a period of time, refer to the NALHN Staff COVID-19 testing and surveillance table (PDF) for requirements.

Masks remain available in all main entrances and all clinical areas.

 Treating Patients with suspected, probable, or confirmed COVID-19?

Transmission based precautions (TBP) are required when caring for a patient with suspected, probable or confirmed COVID-19.

  • Confirmed COVID-19 (no other infective processes) – Enhanced Respiratory TBP (fit tested D95 + Goggles / Face shield)
  • Confirmed COVID-19 + other infective illness (gastro, other respiratory viruses or MRO) – Airborne TBP fit tested D95 + goggles / face shield + gloves + gown
  • Suspected COVID-19 (asymptomatic close contact) - Enhanced Respiratory TBP (fit tested D95 + Goggles / Face shield)
  • Suspected COVID-19 (symptomatic) - Airborne TBP fit tested D95 + goggles / face shield + gloves + gown

 Do Visitors Require Masks?

No, however it is recommended in clinical areas to protect yourself and others.

Surgical masks will continue to be available on entry to a NALHN acute site.

Physical distancing

  • all staff should maintain physical distancing where and when possible and this includes offices, hot desks, and workstations.
  • please do not gather in staff kitchens or form large groups in lunch areas.

You’ve had COVID-19 before and are exposed again to someone with COVID-19

If you have previously tested positive for COVID-19, you will not be considered a close contact for 28 days after your release from isolation. After 28 days, you will be considered a close contact if you are re-exposed to COVID-19 and meet the close contact definition. You will need to quarantine and get tested. Staff Health can provide advice as required on 08 8282 0792.

International travel

If you are returning from overseas travel refer to the NALHN Staff COVID-19 testing and surveillance table (PDF) for requirements.

Contacting Staff Health

NALHN Staff Health can be contacted on 08 8282 0792 Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 4:00 pm. Advice outside of these hours will follow the Occupational Exposures Procedure.

Patient and visitor-related information:

COVID-19 & SCOVID patient management resources

  • NALHN PPG for COVID-19 policies and procedures – search COVID-19
  • NALHN IPCS intranet page
  • All patients to have the MR314 completed on admission
  • For close contacts please use symptom checker form MR314.1 twice a day
  • OWI 5220 Criteria to release Inpatients with Confirmed COVID-19 from Isolation
  • OWI 5235 COVID-19 Pathway for Patients with Recent COVID-19
  • OWI 5221 Suspected COVID-19 Management including positive Rapid Antigen Test pathway

COVID-19 & SCOVID-19 patient management resources can be accessed on the Inside Northern intranet and PPG.

Information about visitors

  • There is no restriction on the number of visitors to general inpatient areas.
  • Masks wearing is recommended but not mandatory.
  • Limits may apply to specialty areas across the Hospital.

At the Lyell McEwin and Modbury Hospitals, volunteers will assist with wayfinding, encourage mask wearing and hand hygiene on Monday to Friday between 8:00 am and 9:00 pm.

Surgical masks and hand gel will be readily available at all NALHN sites.

COVID-19 signs and symptoms

The following are all symptoms of COVID-19. Any patients with any of the below symptoms must be placed in a single room (door closed) with ensuite/dedicated bathroom and have appropriate COVID-19 testing:

  • fever (a temperature of 37.5˚C or higher) or chills
  • cough
  • loss of taste or smell
  • sore throat
  • tiredness (fatigue)
  • runny or blocked nose
  • shortness of breath (difficulty breathing)
  • nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea
  • headache
  • muscle or joint pain
  • loss of appetite

Patient management

  • patient to be managed under airborne transmission-based precautions (single room with the door closed)
  • PCR testing is required (Respiratory Pathogens NAT test if respiratory symptoms, COVID-19 only screening PCR if other symptoms)
  • transmission-based precautions (TBP) cannot be lifted based on RAT results

Contacting IPCS 

  • LMH 08 8182 9126 (ext 29126) and Modbury 08 8161 2096 (ext 2096)
  • NALHN IPCS is available during standard business hours (8.00 am – 4.30 pm) Monday – Friday

Staff well-being and contacts

Employee Assistance Program

Your wellbeing is important to us, and we want to reassure you that our Employee Assistance Providers, Access Programs, Human Psychology and Australian Institute for Loss and Grief are available to support you through this uncertain time.

Access Programs, Human Psychology and Australian Institute for Loss and Grief have transitioned to a telephone counselling model. Staff will be able to access telephone appointments in lieu of all face-to-face counselling appointments.

To make an appointment you may call them directly on the following numbers:

The 24/7 after-hours on-call crisis counselling via the above phone numbers will continue as normal.

Culturally sensitive counsellors are available for Aboriginal employees and their families.  Please make this request upon making a booking.

NALHN staff support

In addition to EAP support, assistance is available for the following:

Telephone and online support services

For people under 25 years of age

Accessing information from home

Staff who have a valid HAD login and O365 account (email address and password) can access the intranet and their work emails on any device through any internet browser via  Select the Outlook app for e-mail and the SharePoint app for the intranet.

Visitor guidelines

See the current visitor guidelines.