NSLHD News July 31

Updated mask policy across NSW hospitals Given the current local transmission of COVID-19

NSW Health has escalated the level of risk of the disease to moderate across the state. This requires all health workers – at both hospitals and community health settings – to wear a surgical mask when they are delivering care or when they can’t socially distance 1.5 metres of patients. Patients, carers and visitors to our hospitals and services across Northern Sydney Local Health District are also required to wear a mask where possible. Children 12 years old or under are not required to wear a mask. The use of masks does not substitute other COVID-safe

practices such as staying at home if unwell, good hand hygiene and physical distancing. People who are unwell are being asked not to visit patients in our hospitals and

health facilities. NSW Health is continuously monitoring the evolving situation and will update advice as new evidence emerges and risk levels change.

careers that risk developing a disabling knee condition A global review has identified the jobs most likely to lead to knee osteoarthritis, prompting calls for greater measures to reduce the painful condition.

More than 70 studies, involving nearly a million people were analysed as part of the biggest review of the knee condition. The international study brought together teams from the Universities of Sydney, Oxford and Southampton. Researchers found construction workers, cleaners, miners, farmers and surprisingly stay-at-home parents were all more likely to develop osteoarthritis. Professor David Hunter, from the Kolling’s Institute of Bone and Joint Research, said they also identified the activities which increased the risk of joint disease, like excessive kneeling, squatting, standing, lifting and climbing stairs. “This large scale review was important to highlight the direct link between specific jobs and knee osteoarthritis, a leading cause of loss of work and disability worldwide,” he said. “One in eight people currently have the condition, and that number is expected to

jump by 50 per cent in the next 15 years.” Lead author Dr Xia Wang, also from the Institute of Bone and Joint Research, said knee osteoarthritis can lead to invasive surgery including total knee replacements. “We hope this research will lead to additional measures to reduce the occupational hazards across a broad range of jobs,” she said. “We also hope it will promote the steps individuals can take to reduce their risk, such as reducing their weight, improving the strength of the muscles around the joint, and reducing the load on the joint when working.”

10 NSLHDNEWS | ISSUE 14| 31 JULY 2020

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