Six parents, four women and two men, have tested positive for COVID-19 in the John Hunter Hospital.
According to Dr Paul Craven, Medical Controller, HNE Health:
On 26 September 2021, the mother of a newborn baby, who was a patient on the Maternity Ward at John Hunter Hospital, alerted staff to the onset of respiratory symptoms.
The parent was immediately isolated and swabbed for COVID-19, subsequently testing positive.
Following her diagnosis, close and casual contacts on the maternity ward and in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at John Hunter Children’s Hospital, where her child is being cared for, were immediately contacted, tested and told to isolate - this included parents and staff.
Since the initial diagnosis, a further five parents have tested positive while in isolation.
All staff were wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) while caring for these families and have to date, all tested negative.
The babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit have been assessed as a low-risk for exposure, however, multiple tests have been undertaken, with all babies testing negative for COVID-19.
The babies continue to receive high quality care from our dedicated nursing staff and neonatologists.
Parents in isolation have access to the NICU’s NICView camera system, which allows them to log on and see their baby 24-hours-a-day.
Exposure sites within the facility have been deep cleaned.
The operation of the NICU is unaffected and staff continue to abide by strict COVID-safe protocols.
Parents who are unaffected continue to access the Unit to spend time with their babies.