Whiddon launches rapid 10 minute antigen tests for staff in Sydney hotspot

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Not For Profit care provider Whiddon has begun rapid COVID-19 testing at its largest aged care campus, Whiddon Easton Park in Glenfield, 36km south west of Sydney’s CBD, to further protect residents and employees in a central COVID-19 hot spot in Sydney.

On Wednesday, there were 97 new cases of COVID-19 in NSW, 70 of them were in Sydney’s south west.

Whiddon Easton Park has over 800 employees caring for approximately 500 aged care residents, in addition to a co-located retirement living community.

The on-the-spot screening tests detects antigens, or proteins, found on the surface of the coronavirus, and will deliver a positive or negative result in just 10 minutes.

If a positive result be detected, the employee must then take a standard diagnostic test in line with Government advice.

CEO Chris Mamarelis (pictured above) said the initiative adds a very important layer of increased protection for residents and employees against COVID-19, while community transmission rates are high.

“Whiddon Easton Park has a large number of residents and employees and is located close to several COVID-19 hotspot areas, with many employees living within these areas.”

“Research has shown that the frequency of the testing is the most important factor in controlling the spread of infection. Employees will be encouraged to test each time they come to work for a period of 14 days at this stage while community transmission remains high.”

The new 138-bed Abberfield Aged Care Facility (pictured right) in Sandringham, 16km southeast of Melbourne’s CBD, is also trialling rapid antigen tests.