A group of WA nurses assisting on Victoria’s COVID-19 frontline will be isolating in the state before being able to return home, the McGowan Government has revealed.
The nurses will remain in Victoria to ensure safety and a shorter isolation period.
Seven nurses traveled to Victoria last month to assist with the state’s COVID-19 outbreak.
However, one of the nurses Renee Freeman, contracted coronavirus in Melbourne while working in an aged care facility, returning a positive test on Sunday.
All the nurses in the team were considered to be close contacts and were required to isolate in Melbourne hotels.
Ms Freeman was quarantined in a separate hotel for frontline workers.
It was thought that the group would be isolated twice with two weeks in Melbourne and two weeks in WA, however WA Health Minister Roger Cook said they would see out their two weeks and would not need to quarantine again.
“They are already a few days into their quarantine experience,” Mr Cook said.
“Staying there is much better than returning to Perth, where they would need to start quarantine again.”
A specially chartered flight would take them back to Perth once the quarantine period was complete.
“This flight will be a clean flight with crew leaving from WA, collecting the nurses and returning directly to Western Australia,” Mr Cook said.
“This will provide the quickest and safest way of getting them back home.
WA Deputy Chief Health Officer Robyn Lawrence said the nurses were comfortable with the decided procedure.
“Universally they thought it was an excellent plan,” Dr Lawrence said.
“They feel supported and look forward to returning to WA as soon as they are able to.”