Patients diverted from North Shore Hospital ED as a precaution

Media release

20 August 2021

People needing emergency care are being diverted from Auckland’s North Shore hospital and Short Stay Surgical Unit from this morning following a positive case being confirmed as being treated prior to their being diagnosed with COVID-19.

The Ministry of Health’s usual statement at 1pm will have more detail of this case and any other new cases.

Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said both the hospital’s Emergency Department and the Short Stay Surgical Unit have been closed today after hospital staff diagnosed a confirmed COVID-positive patient had been earlier admitted to North Shore Hospital for an unrelated condition prior to the current lockdown.

Given the incubation period of the virus, the DHB has assumed that the person could have been infectious during the admission to North Shore Hospital.

The DHB has taken immediate action to close the North Shore Hospital Emergency Department and Short Stay Surgical Unit to new admissions. Diversions to other hospital EDs are in place as the DHB this morning contacts staff and patients who may have been exposed to COVID.

Affected staff will be stood down and advised to follow public health advice and potentially exposed current patients will be notified and isolated as well as tested in the hospital. Patients already discharged will be followed-up by public health officials.

The affected parts of the hospital will be deep cleaned today and then reopened as soon as it is safe to do so.

The DHB will be working today to confirm the number of staff and patients affected.

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