Hospital laundry staff are "absolutely essential" to ensure infection is managed "in the most effective way possible", which is why a newly proposed rota system must be enacted.
This is the view of Independent Galway West TD, Catherine Connolly, who has contacted Saolta seeking clarification on the measures taken to protect laundry staff in Galway University Hospital during the COVID-19 crisis.
It is understood that changes were proposed to the working environment to ensure staff are protected, and there was a proposal in early April to divide staff into two teams to work on a rota basis.
Dep Connolly said this move was "sensible" given that the number of staff of approximately 20 in a confined area "did not allow for social distancing", but Dep Connolly also alleges that this was "accompanied by a punitive condition" that required workers to "make up the hours after the Covid-19 crisis".
However, that aspect of the plan appears to have been dropped, but it also appears as if the rota system has not been implemented. Dep Connolly has sought clarification as to when it will be implemented and, if not, what steps are being taken in this regard.