COVID-19 help and advice for the community
Everyone should take steps to protect themselves and others from the spread of coronavirus in the coming months. Take care wherever you go and assume others may be carrying the virus. Even if you think you're healthy, it's important to help protect our most vulnerable community members - health care workers, Indigenous Australians, older people, those people living with chronic diseases and who are immunocompromised. It's also important to reduce the impact now so that our hospitals and health services don't become overwhelmed and have to turn others who are sick with other illnesses, injuries and complications requiring surgery away.
The steps everyone can take to reduce the risk:
- Stay at home if you feel sick.
- Minimise your contact with others (known and physical or social distancing).
- If you can't maintain a safe physical distance (at least 1.5 metres), wear a mask.
- Wash your hands often with soap and running water, for at least 20 seconds. Drying with paper towel or hand dryer.
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue cough or sneeze into your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces (particularly mobile phones) regularly.
- Phone your doctor or the hotline (below) – if you need medical attention - do not turn up to health services or call 000 if you have any symptoms. It is still safe to see your GP, so don't delay medical concerns. Consultations can also be arranged by telehealth - phone or video.
- Any concerned member of the Victorian public can call the Coronavirus hotline for information and discuss further actions on 1800 675 398. The National Coronavirus Health Information Line is also available on 1800 020 080. If you require translating or interpreting services, call 131 450.
For more information and resources:
- Check your symptoms
- Download the COVIDSafe app to help identify when you are exposed to a person with COVID-19
- COVID-19 and face masks
- Instructions for making a cloth face mask
- Find out what you can and can't do in your state or territory
- Financial support for coronavirus
- Local COVID-19 assessment and respiratory clinics
- Looking after your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak
- Family violence crisis response and support during coronavirus
- EthnoLink translation agency has COVID-19 (Coronavirus) information available in 71 different languages
- SBS news and information available in 63 languages
- Bendigo Community Health Services has developed a Coronavirus Bendigo Refugee Resource Hub: Information in Karen, Dari and Dinka
For community groups:
- Gayaa Dhuwi Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander resources for staying healthy and strong during the coronavirus outbreak
- A message for pregnant women and their families
- How to support children during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Information sheet for people with Parkinson's
- COVID-19 tips for carers, families and friends of people living with Dementia
- COVID-19 Resources for Carers
- Information for people with disability
- Senior Australians can receive help with food, meals and grocery shopping through My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 and support through the new Older Persons COVID-19 Support Line 1800 171 866. Online and phone ‘visits’ can be arranged through the Community Visitors Scheme or by calling the FriendLine 1800 424 287.