Here's what you need to know about coronavirus (COVID-19), how it affects you, and what you can do to look after yourself, your friends and family right now.
What is coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is a virus that causes respiratory infection. This can range from mild illness to pneumonia and may include fever, flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue and shortness of breath. Some people will recover easily, and others may get very sick very quickly. 1
You can get more information on COVID-19 here: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
How does this affect me? How can I look after myself and others?
Well, everyone is being asked to do a few things to protect each other, because this virus can be spread without you even knowing you have it! And you don't want to be the one who makes other people sick. To avoid spreading the illness:
- Follow physical distancing guidelines when you are required to be around other people: maintain at least 1.5 metre distance between yourself and others
- Check out the Victorian Government website for the latest restrictions
- Stop shaking hands, hugging or kissing as a greeting
- Stay healthy with good nutrition, regular exercise and sleeping well
- Practice good hygiene:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or using the toilet. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitiser that contains at least 60 percent alcohol
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- 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 upper sleeve or elbow
- Do not share drink bottles, plates, cups or cutlery
- Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces regularly e.g. phones, keyboards, door handles, light switches, bench tops.
These tips and more are available here: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus-covid-19-transmission-reduction-measures
COVIDSafe Summer - what you need to know! (Last updated 31/12/20)
- You must carry a face mask with you when you leave home.
- Wearing a face mask is only mandatory on public transport, while in taxis or ride share vehicles, or when going to large retail venues, including shopping centres, supermarkets and department stores.
- Wearing a face mask is strongly recommended indoors and outdoors when you can’t keep 1.5 metres distance from other people.
- You can have up to 30 visitors to your home per day. There is no limit on the number of households those people come from. Front and backyards are considered part of the home.
- Up to 100 people can meet outdoors in a public place. There is no limit on the number of households those people come from.
- Record keeping continues to be an important tool for helping Victoria to stay safe and stay open. Businesses that are required to record the details of visitors should use electronic record keeping or QR codes. The Victorian Government has a free QR code service.
- Restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs can open for seated and unseated service. They must use electronic record keeping and apply the two square metre rule to ensure that customers have enough room to keep 1.5 metres between themselves and others. There are no other limits on the number of customers. Venues can have up to 25 people before the two square metre rule needs to be applied.
- Weddings, funerals and religious gatherings can occur with no limits on the number of guests or attendees. To ensure people can keep 1.5 metres distance the venue must apply the two square metre rule. If a service is conducted in a private home, the private gathering limit applies (30 visitors).
- Dance floors can reopen in bars and pubs as well as at weddings. The four-square metre rule must be applied to limit the number of people on the dance floor and there can only be up to 50 people on the dancefloor at one time, if space allows.
- There are also changes to the number of people allowed at community facilities such as libraries, sporting facilities (such as gyms), and entertainment facilities (such as cinemas).
For the latest information and full details, click here.
Why staying home is important to stop the spread:
From 11:59pm on Sunday 2 August 2020, all Victorians must wear a face covering when they leave home, no matter where they live.
For the latest information, head to the link below:
Your mental health during this time is very important:
Check out our page for local resources for looking after your Mental Health During COVID-19.
And please click here if you need support or information with Family/Domestic Violence and COVID-19.
Check out this video about how to calm down when you're feeling anxious, made by young people from Maroondah:
Where can I get further information?
It is normal that this situation, and what we see in the media, can make us feel anxious and overwhelmed. Following reputable information sources is very important.
Check out the latest up to date information on coronavirus via here: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
You can also download the Coronavirus App here: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/apps-and-tools/coronavirus-australia-app
Or you can use what's app - to get started: www.aus.gov.au/whatsapp