Possible Breach Of COVID-19 Infection Control At Sydney Aged Care Home
Anglicare's chief executive says the organisation will raise the possibility of extracting residents from its western Sydney aged care home at the centre of a COVID-19 cluster with those living inside the facility.
Of the five new COVID-19 cases in the state recorded over the past 24 hours, two were recorded at Anglicare Sydney's Newmarch House.
There have been 61 cases and 13 deaths related to transmission at the aged care home.
On Saturday, it was announced that two staff members had contracted the virus and NSW Health had deployed two infection control nurses to the facility to review its procedures.
"We've clearly seen transmission that on the surface looks like there's been breaches of infection control amongst particularly the staff," NSW chief medical officer Kerry Chant said.
"And that's obviously a concern. There are have been some elements where consistent application of infection control practice has not occurred."
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard defended the staff who had spread infection, saying dealing with the virus was "like almost going to the moon".
But he conceded there had been breaches of health protocols.
"Some of those people may or may not known exactly how to use the equipment in the most appropriate way," he said.
"It only takes a moment. Our doctors are highly trained, but like everybody else you can make a mistake."
Anglicare Sydney chief executive Grant Millard said "it would seem that's fairly obvious that there have been failings".
"The use of PPE (personal protective equipment) is foreign to a lot of people," Millard told Seven News on Saturday.
When asked whether there would come a point where Anglicare would decide to remove some residents from the aged care home, Millard said the option would be brought up with those living at Newmarch House.
"In small numbers to date that we've had discussions and this is something that we're going to raise with residents in our communication shortly," Millard said.
NSW Labor leader Jodi McKay called on the government to give all Newmarch residents, even ones who were healthy, the option of being moved to the public hospital system.
The five new cases took NSW's coronavirus tally to 3031, with no new deaths recorded.
There are 109 coronavirus patients being treated by NSW Health, including 14 in intensive care, while 2300 have recovered.
NSW Health announced that it had acquired 600 rapid testing kits that return results in less than an hour, and they will be rolled out across the state.