COVID-19

How Ballarat will meet Melbourne Covid demand

Ballarat Health Services announced it had become a streaming hospital, joining the statewide network, last week.When demand is high in Ballarat, however, other areas across the state including Bendigo will be able to treat local patients.BHS executive director acute operations Ben Kelly said the tent would open in the coming days.“We continue to work towards meeting the needs that Covid challenges us with,” he said.“In preparing for the likely demand in Ballarat, we have taken the step of erecting a temporary marquee adjacent to our emergency department.“That is around being as prepared as we can be for what we think will be significant demand, particularly those with respiratory illness who may or may not be Covid positive.“This will ensure that patients with Covid and those without Covid can be managed.”Mr Kelly said it would also make sure there was enough space to minimise the likelihood of transmission.He said BHS had also sourced personal protective equipment for staff on high-risk wards and have installed a number of air purification devices for the Covid ward.The tent has been fitted with equipment and climate control devices to handle Ballarat’s cold climate. Mr Kelly said the tent would be comfortable for patients.“It’s a very good tent, we have air flow management, airconditioning, it’s heated, we have all the things we need to manage a respiratory type illness,” he said.“Yes, it’s very chilly today, but I’m assure this is a very good tent with great airflow. ”

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