Hospitals brace as borders open | PHOTOS

Both Whyalla and Port Augusta Hospitals are taking action against COVID-19 as the borders open, splitting their Emergency Departments (ED) into seperate areas based on COVID symptoms.

A portable hut which will be turned into a COVID Assessment and Testing Area was delivered to Port Augusta on Friday, as the regions brace for potential outbreaks in the wake of new SA cases.

Whyalla Hospital Nursing Director Lyndell Eckert said along with the usual screening questions, those presenting with COVID symptoms would be treated in a seperate area of the ED.

"That keeps the patients and the staff safe so we can treat them appropriately," she said.

"We won't require additional staff or resources, we have a seperate area of the Emergency Department established."

With the opening of the borders has also come an influx of vaccinations in the Whyalla COVID clinics, and Ms Eckert says the higher numbers are promising.

"We have a 7-day service at the Whyalla Hospital which is a walk-in clinic, and we have the Vax Van which is at the foreshore on Friday, Saturday and Sunday," she said.

"That is a great opportunity for people to get a vaccine while they're down at the beach ... we ask our community to help us stay safe by getting vaccinated."

Asked if she was worried about the recent COVID cases recorded in Adelaide and the subsequent exposure zones, Ms Eckert said the Whyalla Hospital was well prepared to support the community.

"We're not overly concerned but we certainly have procedures ready to adjust our work practices if that should be required," she said.

"Our staff are very well trained and very well versed in what's going to happen."

Ms Eckert said she was "very concerned" about low vaccination rates in areas such as the APY lands.

"We're working very closely with those communities to support those people to make a good choice and get their vaccine as soon as possible," she said.