Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Latest update for our community

Home > About Us > News > Latest update for our community
Latest update for our community

​This information has been published on 9 August 2022. This information will be regularly updated to ensure our community is receiving the most up-to-date advice.


COVID Testing Clinics

Western Health operates a number of COVID Testing Clinics where testing for COVID-19 (coronavirus) is provided.

Sunshine COVID Testing Clinic

CLOSED for walk up testing, testing provided to Western Health surgical patients by appointment only.

Please seek testing at other local testing clinics.

Sunbury COVID Testing Clinic 

Western Health has a COVID Testing Clinic located at 29 Timmins Street, Sunbury.
Adults and children of all ages can be tested in the COVID Testing Clinic.

Hours of operation: 

Monday to Friday: 8.30am – 4.15pm (last entry subject to capacity)

Please note that there is no doctor present at the Sunbury COVID Testing Clinic. If you are unwell and need to see a doctor please contact your usual healthcare provider or call 000 if you are experiencing an emergency.

Clinic may be subject to earlier closing time due to high testing demand and or extreme weather conditions.

Melbourne Showgrounds Drive Through Testing Clinic

Western Health is operating a drive through COVID-19 Testing Clinic at the Melbourne Showgrounds, accessible via Gate 7, Leonard Crescent.

Hours of Operation:

8.30am to 4.15pm every day (last car entry subject to demand capacity)

Clinic may be subject to earlier closing time due to high testing demand and or extreme weather conditions.

Melton Drive Through Clinic 

Western Health is operating a drive through has a testing clinic at 149 Barries Road, Melton West.

Hours of operation:  

8:30am to 4.15pm every day (last car entry subject to demand capacity)  

Clinic may be subject to earlier closing time due to high testing demand and or extreme weather conditions.

Please note, testing criteria will be strictly applied at all sites, without exception.

Please look at the Department of Health and Human Services site for other clinics in Victoria:

Information for patient visitors

Visitors are welcome at Western Health, however, screening for COVID risk factors and some restrictions remain in place to ensure that physical distancing can be maintained and all visitors, patients and staff are safe. 

  • Visitors are registered at entry points and screened for COVID-19 risk factors through completion of the COVID-19 Visitor and Patient Registration electronic survey.

  • Visitors must wear an N95 mask and practice good hand hygiene. Visitors aged between 8 and 17 years are required to wear a surgical mask.

  • Visitors unable to wear the appropriate mask may not be able to enter.

  • Visitors who remove their mask while onsite may be asked to leave the health service.  

  • Patients on designated COVID wards and patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 are only permitted visitors if an exemption is granted.

  • Visitors to more sensitive settings, including Newborn Services, wards 2E, inpatient rehabilitation and palliative care at Sunshine Hospital, are requested to participate in the self-administered rapid antigen testing program currently operating in the marquee at the entrance to Joan Kirner Women’s and Children’s Hospital. 

Guidelines for entry to all Western Health sites

Please note the Western Health birthing unit would like to advise that as of 26 October 2021, all ANC (Antenatal Clinic) patients are required to have a COVID-19 test before entry. The COVID-19 test is called a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) & takes around 20mins to get a result. 

Regardless of your test result, you will be able to give birth at Western Health and staff will work to ensure you and your baby receive the very best care. The health and safety of our patients and staff is always our highest priority.

Who can visit a patient at Western Health?

All visitors are welcome at Western Health, provided that they do not have COVID risk factors such as symptoms or are required to quarantine or isolate due to a recent COVID diagnosis. All visitors will be screened upon arrival.

All visitors must wear an N95 mask throughout the duration of their visit. 

NO visitors aged under 16 years are permitted, unless:

  • they are the parents of a hospitalised child or baby; or

  • they are visiting a patient who has a life threatening medical condition, is receiving palliative care and they are the child, grandchild or sibling of the patient.

  • In the event a child accompanies an outpatient, the clinical area can grant an exemption for the child to enter on a case by case basis if appropriate risk mitigation is in place.

Visitors under the age of 16 who meet the above criteria are not counted in the number of total visitors to a patient. However, if physical distancing cannot be maintained, some visitors will be requested to leave or visit at another time. Wards may use their discretion in this regard.

Children aged 5 years or under are not required to perform a RAT.

How many visitors are permitted per inpatient?

In general, inpatients may have 2 visitor at a time.

2 support persons (mother and father/carer) are permitted to visit Newborn Services/NICU 24/7. However, physical distancing of 1.5m must be maintained and this may mean that some areas permit fewer visitors due to space limitations.  

How long can visitors stay? 

Visits are to be limited to 2 hours.

The duration may be extended with the approval of the Unit Manager or AHA in situations where:

  • the visit is related to end of life care;

  • the visit involves the parents or caregivers of a child, to attend the birth of a child or for other compassionate reasons; or

the visitor is able to provide care or support to the patient (eg. Assisting with feeding, settling confused patients, etc.)

How many visitors are permitted in the ED, Urgent Care and for Outpatients (including Adults, Paediatrics and Maternity OPs)? 

Due to space restrictions, a maximum of 1 visitor or support person is permitted. Depending on the location and type care being provided, sometimes visitors may not be permitted. 

​When are visiting hours? 

Visiting hours are between 12pm and 8pm daily, except in Joan Kirner Women’s and Children’s areas, where visiting hours are 8am to 8pm

Western Health has prepared single entrances for visitors to enter the hospital. On entry, visitors will be screened for COVID-19 and their details will be entered into a visitor register. Each visitor will be provided with a colour coded wrist band (where colour denotes the day of the week) indicating they have been screened and registered.

Visitors are prohibited from entering Western Health if they: 

  • Have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 7 days; or

  • Have been identified as a close contact1 of someone who has COVID-19 within the last 7 days; or

  • Have symptoms of COVID-19 such as:

o   Shortness of breath

o   Temperature higher than 37.5⁰C, fever or chills

o   Cough

o   Sore throat

o   Runny nose

o   Loss of taste or smell

1. A close contact is someone who lives with or has spent more than 4 hours in a house, accommodation or care facility with someone who has COVID-19 while they were infectious.

For those allowed to visit a patient, the following guidelines must be followed :


  • Visitor name, contact details, time of arrival and the patient they are visiting will be recorded by Security upon entry.  

  • Visitors must stay in the patient’s room at all times and limit movement around the building. They can make quick trips to the bathroom or to purchase food.
    Visitors should minimise the consumption of food/drinks during their visit.

  • Visitors over 18 years will be provided with a single use N95 mask when entering the hospital and those aged between 8 and 17 will be provided with a surgical mask. As a condition of entry, visitors are required to wear a mask throughout their visit until they exit the hospital, unless they are exempt from doing so.

  • Visitors must maintain social distancing requirements. There should be no physical contact, keeping a distance of at least 1.5 meters or two arm’s length between themselves and the patient, as well as staff.

  • Visitors should limit the number of personal items that they bring into the hospital when they visit. This will reduce the number of unwanted germs they bring into the hospital and take back home with them.

  • When the visit is over, visitors should leave the hospital and avoid spending time in public areas, including waiting areas, cafeterias and vending areas. Visitors should leave through their point of entry and report to security so the time of departure can be noted. Single use N9masks should be discarded upon leaving the hospital in the bins provided.

  • Visitors should wash their hands with soap or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser after using the lifts, holding railings and every time they enter or exit a patient room.

  • Visitors should use a tissue and cover their mouth when they cough or sneeze, or cough or sneeze in to their elbow.

Patient information - What can you bring to Western Health for patients
Patient information - How to prepare food and bring food into Western Health for a patient

Testing criteria

Strict criteria apply for those who are tested.

If you are unsure of whether you should get tested for COVID-19, please contact the Department of Health and Human Services hotline on 1800 675 398. Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only. 


What is coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness in animals or humans. These coronaviruses include the common cold and more severe diseases like the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).

COVID-19 is a new form of coronavirus, which causes respiratory symptoms, similar to the flu.

Most people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 have only experienced a mild illness and recovered, however the illness can be more severe for others, including vulnerable populations such as the elderly.

The risk of contracting COVID-19 can be reduced through proper hand hygiene, wearing a face covering, respiratory etiquette and social distancing.


How do I reduce my risk of contracting COVID-19?

Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette are two terms that you may have heard of when you have heard about how to reduce your risk of COVID-19. This refers to washing your hands properly and often, and using proper sneezing and coughing practices (covering your nose and mouth with a tissue or coughing or sneezing into your upper sleeve and elbow).

Here are 10 ways you can reduce your risk of getting COVID-19:

  • Wash hands often with soap and running water, for at least 20 seconds. Dry with paper towel or hand dryer.

  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth.

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow.

  • Isolate yourself at home if you feel sick. If you take medication ensure you have adequate supplies.

  • Phone your GP first if you need medical attention. They will tell you what to do.

  • Continue healthy habits: exercise, drink water, get plenty of sleep, and now is the time to quit smoking. Call the Quitline 137 848.

  • As per direction of the Victorian Chief Health Officer, you must wear a face covering whenever you leave your home, unless an exception applies.

  • Get the flu shot (available April).

Watch this video from the World Health Organization on how you can protect yourself and others from the coronavirus:


I have been told to self-isolate for 7 days. Should I attend the Hospital?

No, you should not attend the hospital.

You can read more about COVID-19 isolation on the Victorian Government Department of Health website.

Related links