Chief Executive COVID-19 Update: 19 June


You would be aware that there has been an increase in COVID-19 infections in recent days. This has resulted in our first admission to hospital for over a month and an increase in people infected through untraceable community transmission.

There are also a number of outbreaks in the south eastern suburbs and a cluster of infections associated with the Stamford Plaza Hotel in the CBD. It is important to note that the infections are also in people working at the hotel (security staff) and who live locally to Monash Health services.

IT IS ESSENTIAL that you maintain your vigilance and awareness of the risk of infection. Visitors and people attending Emergency Departments will also be asked if they have had any contact with people associated with these clusters or a person with confirmed COVID-19 infection.

I have said this recently in updates and forums, but it is worth repeating: if you are in a patient-facing role, you must complete your PPE training and understand our Standard Precautions.

Standard Precautions are the minimum infection prevention practices that apply to all patient care, regardless of suspected or confirmed infection status of the patient.

Simply put, please remember:

  • Hand hygiene.
  • Use the appropriate level of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) when droplet precautions are indicated, if there is any risk of exposure to body fluids, or if you are unsure.
  • Always take a moment to risk-assess the situation before any patient contact.
  • If you can’t assess the situation, it’s better to be prepared with PPE – “if in doubt, don’t go without”.

Remember, you must not attend work if you are unwell, and if you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, you must get tested and self-isolate. This approach is the same for us all across any level of the organisation.

Our regular employee and manager forums have been consistently well attended, and I particularly value the feedback and insights we receive from you in the ‘question and answer’ section of each event.

Hearing about your experiences during our response is essential in helping us set a direction for what comes next. For this reason, we have been running a short survey to understand if you are feeling supported and safe, whether our communication has been timely, and more. The survey closes today, so please tell us what you think here.

On Tuesday, I’d like you to join me at the 2pm Employee Forum that will focus on the wide range of capital projects occurring across Monash Health. We will hear about the new Victorian Heart Hospital, where foundation works are nearly complete; the MMC Infusion Centre’s much larger new space; planned works to add capacity at MMC Birth Suites; and a major upgrade to Dandenong Imaging that will see a new CT space developed closer to Emergency, and an additional MRI.

Later in the week, we will run forums about returning to work safely. The first will be at the Manager Forum on Wednesday 24 June and the second, for all employees, on Thursday 25 June. These events will be supported by guides for managers and team members – so keep an eye out for these.

Thank you once again for your commitment and dedication. Follow your processes, remain vigilant and stay safe.

Andrew Stripp
Chief Executive

Key Messages

Mental health training available for everyone 

In the early stages of the Coronavirus lockdowns in Australia, the Black Dog Institute told us they had seen an overall 200-300% increase in the use of their online resources. Monash Health has two mental health training programs online, which you can access via LATTE, put together with the assistance of the Black Dog Institute. Read more here.

Payment summaries coming in the mail, so update your address 

Payroll will be sending this year’s 2019-2020 Payment Summaries by mail. To ensure your Payment Summary is delivered to the correct address, please log in to HR 21/Employee Self Service before Wednesday 24 June 2020 and check that your address is up to date. Payment Summaries will be mailed out within the first week of July and are expected to be delivered prior to 14 July 2020, depending on Australia Post workloads. Read more here.

Elder Abuse: Everyone’s business 

Last Monday was World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the internationally recognised day to focus public attention on the significance of elder abuse as a public health and human rights issue. We held an online event for our employees to increase their understanding of how to recognise and respond to potential cases of elder abuse and to help provide them with a better understanding of changes to guardianship laws.Read more here.

Book in a ‘Give Me Five’ conversation 

Give Me Five conversations support regular, meaningful discussions between you and your manager about your contributions at work and your future aspirations. These conversations are a chance for you to be empowered, engaged, and involved in decisions about your role and future goals and objectives. Learn more here.

Log in to LATTE and complete your mandatory and targeted training 

There are just under two weeks left to log in to LATTE and complete your mandatory and targeted training by 1 July 2020. Learn more here.

Nominate the STARs in your team

Recognise your colleagues by nominating them for a STAR Award before 30 June 2020. Read more here.

More ways to achieve 100% PPE training by 1 July 2020

To enable all of our patient-facing employees to achieve their PPE training requirement, we are introducing face-to-face WebEx sessions starting this Monday (22 June 2020). This means that those who are not able to attend the daily 2pm sessions in person will be able to receive face-to-face training via WebEx meetings.Read more here.

Vaccination or declaration is mandatory

The annual influenza vaccination or declaration by all Monash Health employees is mandatory. The vaccination is the most effective way to prevent infection and, so far, more than 85% of employees have done so. Read more here, including Q & A from a recent Employee Forum.

Employee survey finishes today

Today is your last opportunity to take five minutes to share your thoughts on the effectiveness of initiatives implemented in recent weeks, whether you are feeling supported and safe, whether the communication has been timely, and more. Tell us what you think here.

Remember to take care of yourself

Please continue to prioritise your health and wellbeing. There are resources available to you on theMonash Health employee website that are specifically tailored to our teams.

Ensure you are working to the most up-to-date advice

The information about COVID-19 is changing rapidly. Ensure you are working to the most up-to-date advice by referring to the Monash Health Employee Coronavirus website. To make accessing the site quicker, you can create a shortcut on your smartphone by following these instructions.

All managers are requested to share these updates with their teams and discuss at stand-ups and handovers. Please print a copy and display it in communication books and on employee noticeboards.

As advice and information evolve, please consult the latest updates and visit the Department of Health and Human Services and Monash Health COVID-19 website for employees regularly for the latest.

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