OPEC was engaged by the Royal North Shore Hospital to design a deployable decontamination system in order to meet their disaster preparedness requirements. The overall goal was to provide a system which could accommodate the large number of civilians, in and around the hospital, should an industrial spill or chemical attack occur. The procedures and equipment were to be provided in accordance with the work performed by HAZMAT NSW, and was intended to incorporate both walk-in patients and ambulatory patients.
In order to meet these requirements for the Royal North Shore Hospital, OPEC responded by sourcing the relevant equipment. OPEC obtained a shelter shower system from Immediate Response Technologies. This was a 4-line system with a custom shower area, providing 4 shower booms and 4 separate lines for processing patients. This system also included a bund for the containment of any contaminated water; floor risers to ensure that patients were kept out of the contaminated water; modesty curtains; a conveyor system for ambulatory patients; water supply hose sets and a contaminated water system, with a submersible pump, hoses and water storage bladders.
Ongoing Support and Training
The system was delivered and installed at Royal North Shore Hospital in early 2013, with initial training conducted on the OPEC site. The training ensured the efficiency of Royal North Shore staff, NSW Department of Health staff, and Thiess personnel, who were responsible for facilities management. Since OPEC’s installation of the decontamination system, a number of training sessions have been coordinated.
An on-site training session was held following OPEC’s initial training, to conduct a small exercise for proof of concept, under the guidance of NSW Health Department. The second training session, also held on-site, involved the training of Royal North Shore Hospital staff in order to maintain their currency. Two other similar training sessions have since been held at the Royal North Shore Hospital.
OPEC demonstrated proficient capabilities in providing the necessary equipment and safety training for the Royal North Shore Hospital. OPEC not only sourced adequate decontamination equipment as well as providing essential training, but they guaranteed the hospital’s preparedness for any disaster incidents. OPEC secured the safety and organisation of the hospital in the event of unforeseen circumstances, whilst advancing the health system in coordinating protective measures for industrial or chemical contaminations.