The Bourke Street Health Service (BSHS) has reopened its hydrotherapy pool with a number of COVID-19 safe practices in place. The preventative measures have been introduced to protect pool users, who are often those in the vulnerable category.
The new COVID Safe rules include maintaining social distancing, keeping at least two metres from other people while in the water as well as at the poolside. All pool users must now book their session in advance to limit the number of people in the facility at one time and comply with these requirements. Change rooms are closed therefore pool users need to arrive and leave in their swimwear and will also need to rinse themselves using the poolside shower before entering the water.
The BSHS has been trialling the new measures in recent weeks with a small number of users, to ensure the processes are effective, while being able to deliver this service to the community.
“We’re very happy with how users have adapted to the new rules They have been very understanding of the impact of COVID-19 and how everyone has needed to change their pool routine to keep our community safe”, said John Gale, Senior Nurse Manager at the Bourke Street Health Service.
“We’ve had some very positive feedback from the local users, with people understanding the need to follow hand hygiene practices, the need to stay in their designated pool space and understanding that users need to complete their entire pool routine within the 60 minute allocated session. This includes changing, showering and up to 45 minutes in the water to allow sufficient cleaning time prior to the next session.
The hydrotherapy pool water is regularly monitored to ensure it complies with relevant standards to protect users.
“The water is tested every three hours to check the recommended pH and disinfection levels, while handrails, taps, hand held shower heads, chairs and door handles make up some of the surfaces which are frequently cleaned”, John Gale said.
Pool users are asked to arrive to the main entrance of the hospital 15 minutes prior to their booking time, to have their temperature checked, complete COVID screening and then purchase a ticket, preferably with EFTPOS.
Users will then need to drive around to the pool parking at the rear of the hospital and wait outside on the markers indicated – they are not permitted to walk through the hospital to access the pool.
There are five sessions available per day from 8:30am, 10:30am, 11:30am, 1:30pm and 3:00pm, with a maximum of four people in the pool at once. For more information or to make a booking, call the Bourke Street Health Service reception on 4825 4111 Monday – Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm.