Health and aged care workers

Last Updated: 26 Mar 2020 11:15am

I’m sick and I’m a healthcare / aged care worker

All healthcare workers and aged care workers who provide direct patient care who get sick with fever (≥38˚C) or history of fever (eg night sweats, chills) OR acute respiratory infection (eg shortness of breath, cough, sore throat), with or without recent travel or contact with a confirmed case, are defined as suspected cases. You must not go to work. You must self-isolate and phone your GP or the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 immediately for advice.

I’m not sick but I’m a healthcare/aged care worker. When do I need to stay away from work

You cannot go to work if you:

  • returned to Australia on or after 16 March (you need to self-isolate for 14 days following arrival in Australia)
  • returned to Australia from mainland China, Iran, South Korea or Italy in the past 14 days; you need to self-isolate at home for 14 days from your date of departure from that country
  • had contact with a confirmed case in the last 14 days; you need to self-isolate for 14 days from your last contact with the confirmed case
  • you returned to Tasmania on or after 21 March and have not been exempted from self-isolation; you need to self-isolate for 14 days from your date of departure interstate
  • you have direct patient contact AND you develop a fever (≥38°C; or history of fever eg night sweats, chills OR acute respiratory infection (eg shortness of breath, cough, sore throat), with or without recent travel or contact with a confirmed case.

I’m a healthcare worker returning to Tasmania from interstate. How does the 14 day self-isolation apply to me

Starting Saturday 21 March 2020, all travellers arriving in to Tasmania must complete a Tasmanian Arrivals Form and self-isolate at home or in their accommodation for 14 days unless they meet Essential Traveller or exemption criteria and have received official communication stating that they are exempt.

Exemptions may be available to trained healthcare workers returning home for work, and non-resident trained healthcare workers coming to Tasmania to provide health services not otherwise available in Tasmania. You will need to seek exemption by completing the application form available online at least 24 hours before your arrival in Tasmania. Include as much detail as you can about why it is essential for you to return to work.

Exemption is granted after assessment of the risk and benefit for each healthcare worker’s unique situation. Travel, work and contact history will be considered carefully for each application.

Your exemption will only be granted for the purposes of carrying out the health services in your initial application. You will need to reapply for an exemption to undertake additional services.

Applications for exemption must be authorised by the Secretary, Department of Health.

Health workers should refer to the Information for healthcare workers and the Individual self-isolation exemption application (Health Service). Every healthcare worker seeking an exemption from self-isolation must complete an application form.

If you arrived in Tasmania without an exemption, you are required to isolate yourself until such time that you are advised that an exemption has been granted.

If you are approved for an Essential Traveller status then you will need to comply with the Self-isolation conditions for essential travellers.

To find out more, email Health.exempttraveller@health.tas.gov.au