Thank you for helping to keep our heroes safe!

Posted 25 May 2020

Because of you, more hospital staff can now be fitted with the correct face masks to wear when caring for patients with suspected airborne diseases or respiratory infections, like COVID-19.

Your generous support of the Flinders Heroes campaign has purchased a new PortaCount FiT Testing Machine that determines which disposable respirator mask seal is correct for each health care worker’s individual face shape.

Masks come in a variety of shapes and sizes and it’s vital that staff are wearing a correctly fitted N95 mask. That’s why this new equipment is such an important and valuable addition for staff working across Flinders Medical Centre, Noarlunga Hospital, the Repat Health Precinct and in the community.

Nursing Director of Clinical Work, Health and Safety & Infection Control, Jane Parker, oversees the FiT testing for staff working across the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network, and said the additional FiT Testing Machine would ensure the safety of more staff working in high-risk areas.

“As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, stock levels of the masks usually used by staff are becoming low and SALHN has had to source alternative masks, therefore all staff in high-risk areas need to be re-fitted with the alternative masks,” Jane explained.

“Prior to COVID-19, our Clinical Work, Health and Safety team carried out an average of 50-60 FIT tests per month. Now they are completing 60-70 tests per day.

“The new PortaCount machine is much faster and can perform a re-fit within 5-10 minutes whereas the existing machines can take up to 20-30 minutes – so this extra machine will be so helpful.”

This is just one example of how Flinders Foundation, the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network and the community are working together to prevent, cure and care.

The new machine will also be portable, so FiT testing staff can visit staff in wards and units across its different locations and staff won’t have to use up valuable time to leave their area for the testing process.

Importantly, the machine will also be helpful long after the COVID-19 pandemic has passed.

“All new and existing staff still need to be re-fitted regularly, particularly if they have lost or gained weight, so it will be useful for a long, long time,” Jane said.

Thank you for generously supporting the Flinders Heroes campaign to support the healthcare workers on the frontline working tirelessly to keep our community safe.


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