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    Healthcare Worker Exposure Management

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    Staff Information and Self-reporting tools | Managers Toolkit – Healthcare Worker (HCW) exposure management

    Staff Information and Self-reporting tools

    A dedicated COVID-19 notification system has been set up in the event you test positive to COVID-19 or are identified as a close contact. The system is managed by the WSLHD Case Investigation Surge Team (Internal Contact Tracing Team).

    All staff are required to self-report via this system.

    The WSLHD Case Investigation Team will provide guidance on your isolation and safe return to work.


    If you have returned a positive COVID-19 test result:


    If you have been informed that you are a close contact (through community OR workplace exposure)

    COVID-19 restrictions are being eased again for the general public. From 6pm today, Friday 22 April, close contacts will not have to isolate provided they have no symptoms and comply with guidelines for seven days, including avoiding high-risk settings such as hospitals. The seven-day isolation requirement remains in place for anyone who has recorded a positive RAT or PCR result. Find more information about the new NSW Health guidelines on The Pulse.

    With this is mind, I’d like to clarify the guidelines for WSLHD staff returning to work remain unchanged.

    • Household or close contact: The staff member is unable to attend a healthcare facility for seven days unless they are critical to the service and complete a risk management plan. Information on return to work plan here.

    Before returning to work you must speak to you manager, who will complete a Return to Work - Risk Management Plan (RMP).

    Rapid antigen testing kits will be issued to staff who have an approved risk management plan. Kits are available from staff testing clinics.

    Test results must be recorded daily in accordance with your Return to Work Risk Management Plan.


    Reporting rapid antigen test (RAT) results

    Please note the kits are supplied for staff use only for the purpose of safely returning to work.

    Remember to always get tested and self-isolate if you develop any COVID-19 symptoms.


    Managers Toolkit – Healthcare Worker (HCW) exposure management

    This toolkit must be used in the event of staff exposure to a positive COVID case in the community or at work.

    The WSLHD Case Investigation Surge Team (Internal Contact Tracing Team) was established to support the surge in cases associated with the Omicron variant in December 2021. The case investigation team supports contact tracing for COVID-19 exposure events within WSLHD facilities, working closely with local Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) teams.

    WSLHD Internal Events Notification and Report Process

    This document includes roles and responsibilities, reporting mechanisms, timeframes and actions required.

    If you have a staff member that has tested positive to COVID-19, they are required to complete the COVID-19 Positive notification online form.

    If you have a staff member that has been informed they are a COVID-19 Contact (either through a community OR workplace exposure), they are required to complete the COVID-19 Contact exposure online form


    COVID-19 Managing Health Worker Exposures and Return to Work in a Healthcare Setting, including Risk Matrix for HCW workplace exposures.

    This Clinical Excellence Commission (CEC) document provides instruction for the management of Health Care Workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 in the community or while in the workplace.


    Risk Management Plans (RMP) for returning staff to work

    All completed and approved risk management plans need to be provided to facility /service GMU for record keeping purposes.

    COVID-19 Positive (Release of HCW from Covid-19) – Return to Work RMP

    A COVID-19 positive staff member may return to work on Day 8 if they are a CRITICAL HCW, provided they follow the risk management plan.

    • Approval of returning to work prior to Day 10 if required by a Tier 4 or equivalent manager.

    For all other COVID-19 positive staff members may return to a workplace facility on DAY 10 provided they:

    • Isolated for 7 days (Day 0 being date of test)
    • Have been asymptomatic for 72 hours from Day 7 (to day 9)
    • Risk management plan completed and approved on Day 9

    COVID-19 Identified Close Contact – Return to Work RMP

    This risk management plan links in with the NSW Ministry of Health document “Managing Healthcare Worker exposures”.

    • Arrangements are in place to allow critical healthcare workers to leave self-isolation to attend work if they are well and symptom-free, and subject to daily rapid antigen testing. Approval will be required by the Tier 4 or equivalent Manager in these cases. (Sections 1B or 2C on the COVID-19 Close Contact – Risk Management Plan)
    • Staff returning to work may be required to undertake daily rapid antigen testing as part of the return to work risk management plan. Staff will need to report their results through the NSW Health StaffTrakr application.
      Rapid antigen testing kits will be issued to staff who have an approved risk management plan. Kits are available from staff testing clinics.

    Staff Furloughing Reporting

    The WSLHD Case Investigation Surge Team (Internal Contact Tracing Team) works with each facility / service in the management of furloughed staff.

    Local managers are required to provide regular updates regarding returning to work dates for their furloughed staff via their facility/service contact.

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    Disclaimer: Information on the COVID-19 Staff Information, Staff Wellbeing and other COVID-19 pages are intended for WSLHD staff. Information from these pages is not permitted to be disseminated or distributed to any third party outside WSLHD.
    Any such act may constitute a breach of the WSLHD Code of Conduct.