Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital to introduce rapid testing after COVID-19 scare



The Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne will introduce mandatory rapid COVID-19 testing for visitors after a virus scare at the hospital’s neo-natal ICU.Key points:Victoria has recorded 1,571 new local cases and 13 deathsA parent visited the RCH neo-natal ICU and later tested positive to COVID-19The hospital says rapid antigen testing will begin for visitors this weekIt comes as Victoria records 1,571 new cases and 13 deaths.The new cases were identified from 79,200 test results received yesterday, and 38,072 doses of vaccine were administered at state-run sites.There are now 19,861 active cases of the virus in Victoria and 114 lives have been lost in the current outbreak.The rapid testing precaution at the RCH came after a parent attended the neo-natal ICU on Friday and later tested positive to the virus, informing the hospital on Monday night.There were 29 infants in the unit at the time of the exposure, and all have been tested.None has returned positive to the virus, and all will continue to be tested.The hospital’s chief executive, Bernadette McDonald said no staff have had to isolate, as all were wearing full protective clothing.Ms McDonald said the rapid testing regime will begin at the hospital this week.”As the numbers in the community have increased, we are increasing our protection and rapid antigen testing trials have been done in other facilities and now we get to take that on as well,” she said.”It is a very challenging circumstance to find the balance between allowing mums and dads to come and see their children and spend time with their children … and trying to manage to keep everyone safe from COVID-19.”The move follows a trial of rapid testing at Royal Melbourne Hospital, and the state government’s announcement that it would buy more than 2 million rapid tests for Victoria’s health system.The rapid antigen tests take less than 20 minutes to return a result.Space to play or pause, M to mute, left and right arrows to seek, up and down arrows for volume.WatchDuration: 6 minutes 17 seconds6m Casey Briggs looks at national vaccination ratesWhat you need to know about coronavirus:Loading form…



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