A man in the Ipswich region was denied testing for COVID-19, after he believed he had multiple symptoms.
A man in the Ipswich region was denied testing for COVID-19, after he believed he had multiple symptoms.

‘I should have been tested’: Man turned away from clinic

WEST Moreton Health is standing by its screening processes for the testing of suspected COVID-19 cases.

The region's two fever clinics - one at Ipswich Hospital and one at Gatton Hospital - have been at the forefront of keeping authorities up to date on the spread of coronavirus through the community, while also helping to prevent an outbreak.

A 19-year-old man this week told the Queensland Times he had been turned away from being tested at the Ipswich fever clinic, despite believing he had symptoms.

"I called 13Health and asked for some advice," the man said.

"They told me to go to the hospital.

"I called ahead at the hospital and they also told me to come in."

The man was refused a test after being questioned on site by one of the clinicians.

He said he thought he should have been tested because of his symptoms and the fact he had been around friends who may have also had the virus.

"I've got a cough, a sore throat, shortness of breath and a fever," he said.

West Moreton Health Chief Executive Kerrie Freeman said screening was based on the "regularly updated Series of National Guidelines criteria".

While unable to comment on an individual case, she said the majority of people who arrived at the fever clinics were tested.

"Once at the fever clinic, the clinicians will assess if the person meets the testing criteria before administering a test," Dr Freeman said.

"The majority of people arriving at our fever clinics are subsequently tested. This means the messages around testing criteria and symptoms is being understood."

Dr Freeman said the fever clinics were working as intended, keeping people who are contagious away from other areas of the hospital.

"Our planning ensures we have capacity for COVID-19 patients as well as the needs of wider population, and all health emergencies," she said.

"West Moreton Health has responded to health emergencies in the past and we will do it again in the future. Australia has one of the best health systems in the world and we are prepared."

A COVID-19 hotline is available by phoning 3413 7199. This is operated by registered nurses at Ipswich hospital daily between 8am and 8pm.

For the latest information from Queensland Health visit: https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19.