Queensland mandates vaccination for staff at five hospitals treating COVID-19 patients

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Queensland will mandate vaccination for workers at the state’s five COVID-19 hospitals after a report into a breach which led to a lockdown in late June recommended it.

The independent report into the circumstances in which a 19-year-old clerical worker became infected near the COVID-19 ward at Brisbane’s Prince Charles Hospital, two months ago, was released on Monday.

The woman caught the Delta variant before passing the virus on to two family members and holidaying on Magnetic Island, near Townsville.

The government locked down Brisbane, Townsville and Magnetic Island for three days after she tested positive.

Professor Paul Griffin’s report found no wrongdoing by any hospital administrators or staff, but recommended that workers near COVID-19 wards in hospitals should be vaccinated.

A worker at Prince Charles Hospital who tested positive for COVID-19 sparked a snap lockdown. Credit: AAP

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath says the government will go even further and mandate vaccination for any workers on the grounds of all the state’s five COVID-19 hospitals.

“We want to mandate it for every health worker working in a COVID hospital,” she told reporters on Monday.

“Now of course we would like every health worker across the state to be vaccinated.”

D’Ath said 83.8 per cent of staff have had one dose of a vaccine and 77 per cent of staff are fully vaccinated at the state’s COVID-19 hospitals.

Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath. File image.
Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath. File image. Credit: Dave Hunt/AAP

Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said she has long pushed for all workers at COVID-19 hospitals to be vaccinated.

“I genuinely said that and I believe that we should vaccinate everyone who works in a COVID hospital,” she said.

“That was my view back then, but we’ve got to get there, we can’t do things overnight.”

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