January 6, 2020

Keeping safe and supporting bushfire communities

I would like to wish all of our staff and volunteers a very Happy New Year. For those returning to work this week, welcome back. I hope you all had some time to rest and recover during the holiday period. For those of you who have been working over the festive season, thank you once again for your ongoing dedication to caring for our patients and community.

As you are aware, last week, Victoria declared a State of Disaster for six local government areas as a result of the ongoing bushfires threatening large areas of our community.

This is a challenging time for Australians, and many of us have been, or continue to be, affected by the bushfire emergency. I would like to acknowledge the brave and courageous work of those who are part of the firefighting efforts, some who are also work here at Northern Health. Thank you.

The bush fires are having a major impact in our community, and there are a number of ways you can show your support.

If you are considering making a monetary donation, I would encourage you to do so via the Victorian Bushfire Appeal with 100 per cent of donated funds going directly to communities in need.

Northern Health’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides staff with free and confidential psychological support, and I encourage you to contact this service if you feel impacted by the bushfires.

If any of you live in potentially affected bushfire areas, please let your manager know so we can provide support. Be vigilant, fire ready and safe and check in with family and friends, particularly those within areas affected by fires or who may develop health issues as a result of the air quality.

I hope you have good week ahead.

Siva Sivarajah

Chief Executive