20 March 2020

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (SA Branch) is urgently seeking talks with the Marshall Government on how it intends to find adequate staffing for additional hospital beds.

The Government recently announced the reopening of two hospitals to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic; the old Wakefield Hospital in the CBD and the old ECH College Grove facility at Walkerville. The re-openings will bring the total of new hospital beds in SA to 188.  

ANMF (SA Branch) CEO/Secretary Adj Associate Professor Elizabeth Dabars AM yesterday wrote to the Minister for Health and Wellbeing, Stephen Wade, saying:

“As a matter of broad principle, we support making additional beds available given the likely impact of the virus on the health system and the broad need to make services more readily available to the community. 

“However, we seek to be advised as to how you have identified the required staff resources and whether you have obtained, or how you propose to obtain, the same.’’ 

Ms Dabars wrote:
“Given that staffing of these services will be crucial to providing safe and appropriate care, and equally in recognising that there may be difficulties in securing adequate supply to meet demand, we seek your urgent consultation and engagement on these and any other strategies that are under development. 

“We seek to emphasise that we wish to operate collaboratively but this is impossible in the absence of engagement on the strategies. To this end we seek your urgent intervention to ensure consultation and engagement occurs.’’

  Read the correspondence