A South Australian woman will appear in court after allegedly stealing 100 face masks from a hospital.

The woman went to the Port Pirie Hospital on Tuesday where police say she took the face masks which had been provided to the public on a one-for-one basis.

The 46-year-old was arrested on Thursday and charged with aggravated theft.

The theft comes as healthcare workers have reported shortages of personal protective equipment, with people stealing masks and hand sanitiser, amongst other supplies from hospitals.

Under the current temporary Emergency Management Act, theft of healthcare supplies carries harsher penalties.