14 Jan 2022
Since the beginning of the pandemic, our industrial relations partner, ASMOFQ has been continuously raising issues with Queensland Health regarding their COVID-19 response and workforce plan.
Last year, ASMOFQ successfully took Queensland Health to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission (QIRC) over the supply, access and fit-testing of PPE, and secured a commitment that no doctor would be forced to care for a patient without the appropriate PPE.
On Friday 7 January 2022, ASMOFQ took Queensland Health to the QIRC again seeking the following.
- Fit-testing of all doctors who will be required to wear N95/P2 respirators when providing direct care to patients (in accordance with high-risk PPE status).
- Clear and timely information provided to staff regarding their requirements for COVID testing*, particularly so they are not waiting for hours in queues to be tested unnecessarily.
- Clear and timely notifications provided to staff regarding workplace exposures*, including email and/or SMS notifications as necessary.
- Granting of special paid leave (and not being forced to use sick leave) in circumstances where staff are required to isolate due to close contact exposure and awaiting COVID test results. We recommend that all doctors apply for special leave (and not use sick leave) where you have been directed by the employer to take leave from work in this situation.
ASMOFQ are back in the QIRC this week and will continue to hold Queensland Health to account and will update members again after this hearing.
In the meantime, ASMOFQ are also raising issues in relation to fatigue management, rostering and redeployment.
If you are experiencing any difficulties with these or other issues, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
*These issues were raised in real-time on behalf of our members prior to the change in the definition of 'close contact' on 30 December 2021.
Published: 14 Jan 2022