Cash in­jec­tion to help flu fight

Campaspe News - - NEWS -

THIS flu sea­son has had a ma­jor im­pact on our health ser­vices.

But an in­jec­tion of more than $90,000 from the state gov­ern­ment aims to lighten the load.

Rochester and El­more District Health Ser­vice will re­ceive $83,628 and the Lock­ing­ton Bush Nurs­ing Cen­tre will re­ceive $10,000 to pro­vide re­lief from one of Vic­to­ria’s worst flu sea­sons.

Although REDHS hasn’t had a large in­take of pa­tients with in­fluenza, the im­pact has been on its staff.

‘‘We have been im­pacted through our staff be­ing on sick leave,’’ REDHS chief ex­ec­u­tive Anne McEvoy said.

‘‘The ma­jor­ity of flu cases get con­trolled by our GPs but if a pa­tient was to es­ca­late it wouldn’t be ap­pro­pri­ate for our fa­cil­ity to care for them.

‘‘They would get re­ferred else­where.’’

Mrs McEvoy said they have had con­firmed cases of in­fluenza A.

‘‘Our main fo­cus is on in­fec­tion con­trol, es­pe­cially on hand wash­ing and through vac­ci­na­tion,’’ she said.

‘‘We have a new in­fec­tion con­trol prac­ti­tioner start­ing soon and this money, although it is not a huge amount, will be put to­wards con­tin­ued ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing of staff.

‘‘It is im­por­tant that the staff un­der­stand the im­por­tance of in­fec­tion con­trol es­pe­cially since the flu sea­son isn’t over yet.’’

Mrs McEvoy said any fund­ing is al­ways wel­come.

‘‘This money will lighten the load a bit and help us to be pre­pared,’’ she said.

‘‘Our aged care also has a great in­fec­tion con­trol pro­to­col which I think is re­ally im­por­tant.’’

Mem­ber for North­ern Vic­to­ria Mark Gepp an­nounced the sup­port pack­age last week.

‘‘Hos­pi­tals across Vic­to­ria have been feel­ing the pres­sure with more than 14,000 flu cases re­ported across Vic­to­ria this flu sea­son,’’ he said.

‘‘This money will be key to sup­port­ing our lo­cal hos­pi­tals.

‘‘Our ded­i­cated doc­tors, nurses, paramedics and other health­care work­ers have done a re­mark­able job in the face of un­prece­dented de­mand — en­sur­ing pa­tients are re­ceiv­ing the first class care they de­serve.’’

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