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Coronavirus – COVID 19

WHAT IS CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)? Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that make people sick, such as common colds and other upper respiratory tract infections. COVID 19 is a kind of coronavirus which is causing more people to be sick and develop more serious illness than other coronaviruses. The World Health Organisation declared COVID 19, originating in Hubei Province, China, a global pandemic in March 2020 due to its rapid spread throughout the world.

LATEST INFORMATION AND RESOURCES The Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is changing rapidly. The most up-to-date information for Australians is on the Australian Government website here. You can also access helpful resources such as fact sheets and FAQs (including in languages other than English) here. If you have any concerns that are not covered in these resources, the Australian Government has set up a Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

WHEN TO SEEK MEDICAL HELP?

If you experience shortness of breath, along with fever and cough, it is important to see a doctor quickly.

All general practices are asking patients to call ahead so they can make arrangements to keep you and other patients safe during your appointment.

If you can’t get an appointment easily, we recommend attending an emergency department as soon as possible. Again, please call ahead. If you experience difficulty breathing call triple zero (000).

In Australia, the people most at risk of getting the virus are those who:

  • Have recently been overseas
  • Have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with Coronavirus
  • Are in group residential settings

If you develop any symptoms within 14 days of last contact with a confirmed case or within 14 days of returning to Australia, you should see a doctor.

Currently, it is recommended that you will be tested for Coronavirus if you have fever cough/cold/flu symptoms, and:

  • You have recently returned from overseas or travel on a cruise ship
  • Have known contact with someone who has had or got coronavirus
  • You have pneumonia and the cause is not clear
  • You are a health care, aged care or residential care worker
  • You have lived in an area considered high risk for community transmission
  • You have serious illness
  • You are in hospital
  • There is no other clear explanation for the symptoms.

Further information including resources in another language can be found at health.gov.au