Midwest News asked Saolta since last week, to clarify if there continues to be crossover of staff at Mayo University Hospital between Covid 19 and non Covid 19 patients.
We asked for an interview with the CEO of Saolta Tony Canavan or the Manager of Mayo University Hospital Catherine Donohoe - but neither have been available for days now.
Finally yesterday afternoon we did receive a written statement from Saolta and while it provides some information on the management of patients at the hospital it does not answer the direct question asked about the crossover of staff between covid and non covid patients.
This morning again Midwest News has been contacted by people who insist that up to last week there were non covid patients on wards with patients who had tested positive for the virus. They are questioning if staff in such a ward were not taking care of both covid and non covid patients.
Midwest News has contacted Saolta again this morning and asked if that was the situation up to the end of last week, and again asked for clarification over the crossover of staff between covid and non covid patients at Mayo university Hospital
The Saolta statement reads
Mayo University Hospital has implemented a range of Infection Prevention and Control practices to manage suspect and confirmed COVID-19 patients and reduce COVID infection rates amongst patients and staff.
The hospital has ensured that patients are streamed into COVID-19 and non COVID-19 pathways since mid-March in line with the guidance at the time. This meant that to the greatest extent possible, patients who were suspected of having COVID-19 or were confirmed of having COVID-19 were kept physically separate from other patients in the hospital. This required some physical changes to the hospital (including a new entrance).
While every effort is made to ensure patients are streamed separately, occasionally it will happen that a person in a designated ‘non-covid’ space will turn out to be positive as s/he may not have shown any symptoms. Patients who develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19 on a ward, are tested rapidly and transferred to the COVID-19 ward if diagnosed.
The hospital has also separated its clinical staff into teams to minimise contact between staff and reduce the risk of patient infection healthcare worker and - this was all based on the national guidance provided at that time.
The Saolta University Health Care Group is assured that the appropriate control measures are currently in place in Mayo University Hospital in relation to the management of COVID 19. There has been Saolta Executive, Microbiology and Infectious Diseases input into the management of COVID-19 in the hospital. In line with good practice, the hospital also had direct input from the HSE’s Public Health Specialist service.
It is important that people experiencing symptoms such as chest pain or stroke do not delay seeking treatment. The HSE is running a radio ad campaign to remind people that the EDs are open and not to delay seeking treatment.