Capacity doubled as COVID-19 cases rise on Mid North Coast
THE number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the Mid North Coast has risen to 37.
This is an increase of two cases - the 37 cases reported today (up to 8pm Monday) are up two from 35 reported yesterday (up to 8pm Sunday).
Of the 37 Mid North Coast Local Area Health District cases, four are being cared for in hospital, two are in ICU, four have completed their isolation and recovered, and 27 are in home isolation.
The North Coast Public Health Unit is contacting close contacts of the new cases, who are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days. They will be contacted daily to check they are well. Should any of these close contacts develop COVID-19 symptoms they will be tested.
A total of 2,178 tests have been completed, with 1.7 per cent of those proving positive.
The likely source of infection is as follows:
Overseas acquired 30
Contact of a confirmed case or a known cluster 2
Contact not identified 0
Under investigation 5
In response to the crisis the Mid North Coast Local Health District will double intensive care capacity and boost its workforce - extending casual and part-time employees, boosting agency casuals boosted and upskilling parts of the workforce.
Chief Executive Stewart Dowrick says the local health service is also activating plans to manage elective surgery lists as the system moves into a period of managing COVID-19 and the upcoming winter flu season.
"We have plans well underway to significantly increase capacity in our public hospitals to care for those patients requiring hospitalisation."
"It is important to note that most people who contract the COVID-19 virus will likely have mild illness and be able to self-isolate at home without the need for hospitalisation. Internationally, this has been shown to be around 80 per cent of confirmed cases," Mr Dowrick said.
The health district is also exploring options to extend its workforce by drawing form the broader public and private sectors to help respond to anticipated increases in clinical activity.
There are seven hospitals in the Mid North Coast Local Health District:
- Coffs Harbour Health Campus.
- Bellinger River District Hospital.
- Dorrigo Health Campus.
- Kempsey District Hospital.
- Macksville District Hospital.
- Port Macquarie Base Hospital.
- Wauchope District Memorial Hospital.
NSW Government's COVID-19 health package
The NSW Government has announced a $2.3 billion health boost and economic stimulus package with $700 million to assist NSW Health tackle COVID-19.
This funding will support NSW Health to double ICU capacity, prepare for additional COVID-19 testing, purchase additional ventilators and medical equipment where needed, roll out more COVID-19 assessment clinics. Funding has also been provided to support health services to deliver elective surgeries to those patients with the highest clinical needs, and the private hospital system has also been engaged to support this.
Members of the community have a key role to play in preventing the spread of COVID-19 by staying home where possible, washing your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub, covering coughs and sneezes, maintaining social distance and observing rules on social gathering.
For details on the NSW Government's response to COVID-19, visit this website.