NSLHD News October 15 2021

Message from the Chief Executive Deb Willcox

We are fast approaching 80 per cent of the eligible population vaccinated in NSW and we have already seen some relaxing of restrictions and the easing of pressure on our health system. We have started to see a reduction in the number of people needing hospitalisation and who require ICU care. This is welcomed by our ICU and respiratory teams who have been working extremely hard caring for patients who are seriously ill with COVID-19. It has also meant we have been able to resume some services, such as some surgeries and we continue to explore what services we can resume over the coming weeks, balancing the need with COVID-19 hospitalisations. As we know with this pandemic, we are never out of the woods, and while the case numbers have decreased, we expect them to rise as more people now move about in the community. Here in Northern Sydney Local Health District, we have a high rate of vaccination among the community, as well as among our workforce. Thank you for everybody who has played a part in achieving such terrific rates of vaccination. This week we have seen the return of visitors to our hospitals. Currently only two visitors per patient a day are allowed, but this will bring much comfort and relief to our patients and their families who have had to be separated during this difficult time. On 14 October we celebrated our outstanding allied health team across the district. The past year has been difficult, but allied health, along with our other healthcare workers and support staff have risen to the challenge and showed tremendous teamwork, resilience and care.

This year’s theme is ‘Celebrating the Allied Health Community’ and given the circumstances of 2021, it has never been more important to acknowledge the important work that they do. Allied health professionals have stood shoulder to shoulder with doctors, nurses and support staff on the frontline in hospitals around Australia during the response to COVID-19. While some of the ways in which they see and treat patients have changed, one thing that has not wavered is their commitment to their patients and their community. I am continuing with my live streamed COVID-19 updates for staff. This week I was joined by the Virtual Hospital’s A/General Manager Jess Drysdale and A/Medical Director Paul Collett. If you were unable to join us, a recording will be made available on the intranet homepage under Messages from the Chief Executive after the event. You can also view the recording through the For Staff portal of the NSLHD website which is in the footer of every page at the very bottom of the website. Two-way communication is so important, especially as we navigate the next stages with the pandemic, so I encourage as many of you to send through questions to NSLHD-areacommunications@health.nsw. gov.au which I can have answered at the updates. Thank you for everything you are doing to ensure we provide the very best care to our patients. Deb Willcox Chief Executive Northern Sydney Local Health District



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