As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve rapidly, I want to provide a few updates on how we are managing the situation at the Institute.
MCRI, along with our campus partners are closely monitoring the unfolding situation relating to COVID-19 and are staying updated on the latest information provided by the Department of Health at www.health.gov.au
Protecting the community
First and foremost, we are committed to protecting our patients, visitors, supporters and staff. We have postponed normal events and external visitors until further notice, and have those staff who are able to work remotely doing so. This is a crucial step to help protect the frontline healthcare workers of our Campus partner, the Royal Children’s Hospital.
Protecting your family
For information about minimising infection risk, and guidance on how to talk to children about the virus, please see Coronavirus and children in Australia* published by MCRI’s partner, The Raising Children Network.
Our research response to COVID-19
Last week we established a group of infectious disease clinical and research experts to plan and oversee research into COVID-19 on Melbourne Children’s Campus. Our focus is to identify areas where MCRI has the expertise to support the global effort.
We look forward to sharing more details about these projects in the coming weeks, but they include potential interventions to lessen the virus’ impact, and research into the short term and long term effects of the infection on children, families and health care workers.
MCRI’s business continuity
Of course, our established research programs continue. Our board and staff are all working incredibly hard to maintain our research progress during this unprecedented situation. Thank you for your continued support and commitment to our research during this challenging time - it is greatly appreciated.
Children are at the heart of everything we do. As the Director of MCRI, I can assure you we are all committed to doing everything possible to suppress COVID-19. This is truly a team effort.
Now more than ever it is a time to practice physical distancing but maintain our connection with one another. We will continue to use a variety of means to keep you updated about this unprecedented situation.
Until then, please take care of yourselves and your family.
All best wishes,
Professor Kathryn North AC
Murdoch Children’s Research Institute
* The Raising Children Network article was reviewed by Associate Professor Nigel Crawford, paediatrician and immunisation medicine specialist, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne and the University of Melbourne; and Associate Professor Jill Sewell, paediatrician, the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne.