Perth nurses want free lead test after water contamination concerns
Perth nurses want free lead test after water contamination concerns.
MORE than 160 nurses at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital say free blood testing should be offered as the lead contamination scandal continues.
Australian Nursing Federation State secretary Mark Olson said about 96 per cent of nurses surveyed believed blood tests should be offered to staff, which was a clear sign members were concerned.
“To be clear, the ANF is not forcing tests on anyone, we are just responding to concerns from our members and the community about unsafe lead levels in the area,” Mr Olson said.
“Anyone who has spent a lot of time in the QEII area, is concerned about having been affected by lead and wants a test should be entitled to a free test from the Government.” He said the McGowan Government told the ANF this week it would distribute information sheets to SCGH staff about the availability of the free tests.
A spokesman for North Metropolitan Health Service said the Chief Health Officer had advised the water supply on the QEIIMC site was safe to drink.
“However, NMHS has made available expert health officers to provide information, clarification and reassurances to staff about the safety of the drinking water on the QEIIMC site, as well as facilitate a blood test referral,” he said.
The blood tests, each costing about $35, would be covered by NMHS.
Health Minister Roger Cook last week said two out of 500 water tests at the hospital precinct in the past financial year showed results that “did not meet Australian drinking water guidelines”.
High readings were recorded on March 13 and 22.