Healthcare practitioner at KZN hospital tests positive for Covid-19


The Hibiscus Hospital in Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal, has taken extra precautions against Covid-19 after one of its healthcare practitioners tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

"The hospital was informed on 27 March that a healthcare practitioner who had worked in our hospital has subsequently tested positive. The same healthcare practitioner had tested negative two weeks earlier," Hibiscus Hospital Group CEO Richard Mills said in a statement on the group's official Facebook page on Sunday.

He said the healthcare worker had not returned to the facility since testing positive.

"The worker's right to privacy and confidentiality also had to be respected."

Mills said the hospital contacted Ugu District Health, the local Centre for Disease Control and the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).

"They immediately provided the hospital with guidelines and management protocols to follow and they were satisfied with our response."

'Strict universal precautions'

He said basic procedures were in place for all healthcare professionals at the hospital.

"The department of health has requested [we] emphasise the importance for everyone, including healthcare practitioners, to complete, on a daily basis, the information form which is provided for the main entrance of the hospital."

He added: "For this reason we have closed all other entry points besides casualty, which is open for emergencies only."

READ | Coronavirus Q&A: Will rapid antibody tests save SA?

Mills called on staff to follow the Covid-19 policy "relative to positive and/or PUI (patients under investigation) regarding PPE (personal protective equipment) which is available, and to follow the strict universal precautions of infection, prevention and control measures".

Last week, Dr Richard Friedland, CEO of the Netcare Group, said three patients died from Covid-19 at the St Augustine's Hospital in Durban within 72 hours.

The hospital's emergency trauma unit was then closed to the public with Premier Sihle Zikalala saying that 11 healthcare professionals, thought to come from the same hospital, had been diagnosed with Covid-19.

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