Chief Executive COVID -19 Update: 11 November 2020

Message from the Chief Executive

  • As of today, we have:
    • Two COVID-19 positive inpatients
    • No employees with COVID-19
    • One employee in precautionary quarantine

    Today is Remembrance Day, a day when we honour the members of our armed forces and commemorate Australians who died in the line of duty. On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, a minute’s silence is observed across Australia. I encourage you to take some time out to stop and reflect in memory of those who have died or suffered in wars and armed conflicts.

    In late January, Monash Health received and provided care to the very first COVID-19 patient in Victoria (and Australia). Today, the last remaining active cases are with Monash Health, and we hope to close out this chapter in Victoria’s COVID-19 journey very soon as our patients are not far from being cleared.

    Victoria has now achieved 12 days with no new coronavirus cases or deaths, we have no Health Care Worker infections in the state, and on Sunday the Premier announced the Third Step of the ‘roadmap to reopening’. Among the changes under this step, the 25-kilometre limit is no longer in place, and there has been an easing of restrictions in relation to hospital visitation.

    The Health Service Incident Command Team (HSICT) at Monash Health endorsed implementing the eased restrictions by this Thursday (12 November), and we will do so in a careful, measured manner. Included in the changes are that those aged under 16 will be able to visit hospitals, and the time limit for partners visiting maternity wards will no longer exist. Further details about changes to visitor restrictions will be provided in the coming days.

    There will be a need for patience and understanding as we transition, and physical distancing will remain vital. As restrictions ease within and outside of healthcare settings, we need to remember to stay vigilant – wear appropriate PPE, observe hand hygiene and, importantly, get tested when we feel unwell.

    Celebrating NAIDOC Week

    This year’s National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week has the theme ‘Always Was, Always Will Be.’ It recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years.

    Monash Health acknowledges this continual connection and living culture that is the oldest in the world, and we are committed to creating a culturally safe environment and ensuring that everyone has equal healthcare opportunities.

    This year’s NAIDOC week activities at Monash Health look a lot different than previous years as we have moved online with many of our events. You can read more about them here.

    Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer / Executive Director, Residential Care & Support Services

    I am delighted to be able to announce the appointment of Professor Katrina Nankervis as the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer and Executive Director, Residential Care & Support Services for Monash Health. Katrina will be known to many of you through her leadership and guidance as Director, Nursing and Midwifery Education and Strategy (NaMES). In December 2019, Katrina was appointed to the role of interim Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer and rapidly became an important member of the Executive for the Monash Health pandemic response.

    Gathering of Kindness

    In keeping with our strategic principle of working together with humility, respect, kindness and compassion, we are delighted to be participating once again in the Gathering of Kindness celebrations from 9-13 November. There are a number of ways you can get involved in this year’s events.

    International Pathology Day
    Today we celebrate International Pathology Day (IPD), a day dedicated to highlighting the role of pathology in the healthcare community and in the lives of those we care for.   Our Pathology team has played a fundamental role during COVID-19. Their work has underpinned our response to the virus and helped to guide us safely through this pandemic.

    Thank you once again for the care and kindness you demonstrate every day.

    Andrew Stripp

    Chief Executive


    Key Messages

    Pathology implements Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) testing
    The Department of Genetics and Molecular Pathology at Monash Health Pathology has commenced its much-awaited genomic program by implementing Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) testing.

    NGS assays allow the assessment of multiple genes in one go, improving the quality and range of care we offer to a large cohort of patients within our catchment area. Read more here.

    Beyond the Mask Episode 6 – Fairley Wijesinghe

    In episode 6 of our series, Food Services Manager, Fairley Wijesinghe describes what it’s like to work behind the scenes in food service during a time of COVID-19, combined with a time of significant growth at Casey Hospital. Throughout it all, Fairley brings enthusiasm and gratitude for his close-knit team and the ability to ‘remain cool’ as a leader in testing times. Watch the video. 

    Here’s how you can spread some kindness this week

    This week we are celebrating kindness and learning about how we can continue to demonstrate kindness in our work every day. Through the Gathering of Kindness, you have the opportunity to hear from experts and our executives about kindness in healthcare. Join us on Thursday 12 November for a special edition of the employee forum and don’t forget to register for sessions on World Kindness Day, Friday 13 NovemberLearn more about a few ways you can spread kindness during the week. 

    You still have time to enter the Marquee Naming Competition

    You have the chance to have some fun and name one of new meals marquees located at Casey, Clayton and Dandenong hospitals. The closing date has been extended to submit your entries in the competition – you now have until close of business, Thursday 12 November.

    Entries are to be emailed to Georgina Russell at 

    Reminder: Register for free for the Dandelion Wishes Celebration at Home

    21 November 2020 from 7.15-8.30 pm

    You and your household are warmly invited to a sparkling evening of entertainment in support of the new Monash Health Children’s Emergency Department. Hosted by Alicia Loxley from Nine News, the night will include exciting performances, auctions, patient stories, and messages, all live-streamed into your living room. Early bird lucky door prize closes on Friday 13 November.

    Free for Monash Health employees, simply enter the promo code ‘MHEMP’ and use your Monash Health email address. Bookings:

    November EMR Best Practice Webinar Series

    This series will cover:

    • Nursing – Risk Assessments and Care Plans Documentation. Webinars are available every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 2.00-3.00pm and can be booked on LATTE
    • Doctors – Problem List and General Question and Answer session. Webinars are available Tuesdays at 12.30-1.30pm and Thursdays 1.30-2.00pm

    The EMR Best Practice Series webinars are in-service style presentations that you can tune into to watch on your smart phone, tablet or computer. To find the webinars on LATTE, click on ‘Course Catalogue’, then type ‘best practice’ into the ‘Find Course’ box, then click on ‘EMR end user’.


    Upcoming events

    Stay up to date with events on our COVID-19 website for Monash Health employees.

    Allied Health Assistant Day 2020, 9am-2pm Wednesday 11 November

    This online event will be live-streamed via Webex. AHAs who are doing outstanding things will share their experiences with other AHAs from across Australia.

    Read more.

    Manager Forum, 2pm Wednesday 11 November

    Read more.

    Employee Forum, 2pm Thursday 12 November

    Thursday’s Employee Forums have a wellbeing focus.

    A special edition of the Employee Forum. Chief Medical Officer Dr Anjali Dhulia will be hosting a Schwartz Round with a focus on kindness. Schwartz Rounds are forums where both clinical and non-clinical employees can come together to discuss the emotional and social aspect of healthcare.

    Read more.

    World Kindness Day 2020, Friday 13 November

    A number of sessions will run throughout the day that focus on the themes of kindness and resilience.

    8:00am – 9:00am – Simon Anderson, researcher behind the ‘Public Policy and the Infrastructure of Kindness in Scotland’ report

    9.30am – 10.30am – Dr Chris Turner, founder of Civility Saves Lives

    11:00am – 12:00pm – Expert panel on the notion of resilience with Julia Harper, David Clarke, Dr Carmel Crock and facilitator Sharee Johnson.

    Read more here.

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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