For most of 2020 health workers have been on the frontline of the fight against COVID-19 and have had longer and more exhausting times than normal.

The week starting September 26 is Health Heroes Week and our Queensland Health heroes will be recognised during this time.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services Steven Miles said Health Heroes week is an opportunity for Queenslanders to say thanks to the state’s frontline and support health care staff for their hard work to keep Queenslanders safe over the past eight months.

“I’ve seen firsthand the dedication and commitment of our healthcare workers to keep our communities safe throughout this pandemic,” Mr Miles said.

“Our best line of defence against COVID-19 is our health care workforce, who are doing incredible amounts of testing and contact tracing, caring for Queenslanders who become ill, keeping our facilities clean, and working behind the scenes to provide the latest health advice and updates to keep the public informed.

“This strong health response has helped us avoid the situation we have seen in countries like the USA or Italy, where health systems have been overwhelmed and devastated entire economies,” he said.

As part of the thank you from the State Government, frontline Health Heroes will be able to access up to two days additional leave to thank them for their role during the pandemic.

The additional two days leave will apply to permanent and temporary full-time health care staff (excluding executives) across Queensland Health, including the Department of Health, Hospital and Health Services and Queensland Ambulance Service staff. Part time staff will be pro-rated.

Eligible staff will be able to take the pandemic leave from 1 November 2020 and within two years.

Mr Miles said this is one way we can say thank you to all our health heroes for their ongoing and tireless commitment to the pandemic response.

“We all know having time off is important for our health and wellbeing. This will give a little extra time for staff to do the things they enjoy or spend more time with their families.

“This is for our hardworking doctors, nurses, public health teams, ambos, pathology workers and health professionals, as well as support staff who help them do their jobs like cleaners, kitchen staff and administration staff.”

All Queenslanders will be invited to say thank you to our health heroes with a dedicated week of celebrations featuring organised events and activities.

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