About 100 hospital beds on standby in case COVID-19 outbreak worsens
The Victorian government has clarified a tip suggesting between 150 and 200 beds at major hospitals such as the Royal Melbourne Hospital and Box Hill Hospital have been closed to general patients in case the outbreak worsens.
A government spokesperson says about 100 beds have been identified across the public health system, which could be made available to COVID-19 patients within 24 hours if needed.
The beds have not been vacated at present.
“They will only be used if required, which is currently not the case,” a government spokesperson said.
Victorian President of the Australian Medical Association, Dr Roderick McRae said it’s “a wise precaution”.
“One of the key things … is do not blow out the public health system,” he told Neil Mitchell.
“It’s prudent to plan ahead.
“I think that’s a very wise precaution to set aside about that number.”
There are currently three people in hospital with COVID-19 in Victoria.
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FULL STATEMENT FROM A STATE GOVERNMENT SPOKESPERSON: