The Latest Coronavirus Advice and Information

 

Your best source of accurate and up-to-date information about Coronavirus in Victoria is the Dept. of Health and Human Services Coronavirus webpage: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus

We’ll relay you pertinent information from DHHS as it becomes available.


HOW WIDESPREAD IS IT?

Thirteen new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) were confirmed yesterday, March 14, bringing the total number of cases in Victoria to 49.

The new cases include 11 men and two women aged between 20 and 69. All cases are recovering at home in isolation, except for one person who was admitted to hospital and is stable. All new confirmed cases were acquired overseas or through close contact with known, confirmed cases of COVID-19. 

At the present time, there remains only one confirmed case of COVID-19 in Victoria that may have been acquired through community transmission. This case is a person who had travelled interstate during the period they could have acquired their infection.

For the latest information about Coronavirus in Victoria, visit www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus

THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

Key information from the Victorian Dept. of Health and Human Services:

  • Victorian Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton said we expect to see more and more cases of COVID-19 in Victoria.
  • For the virus to spread, extended close personal contact is most likely required. Close personal contact is at least 15 minutes face-to-face or more than 2 hours in the same room. But visitors to locations where cases have been should be aware of the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Hands should be washed regularly with soap and water. Cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow. If you are ill, stay at home.
  • Follow these guidelines to reduce your risk of Coronavirus.
  • Extensive testing has shown that people who have passed through places where there was a confirmed case, known as casual contacts, have an extremely low risk of transmission.
  • Over a thousand casual contacts have been tested in Victoria to date without any positive findings.
  • The Victorian Department of Health and Human Services has a hotline for public information on COVID-19 which is 1800 675 398. Large numbers of calls will result in some delays and we ask Victorians for their patience as we work to manage the volume.
  • Call ahead. If you have a fever or respiratory symptoms, please call ahead before getting tested. Ring the COVID-19 24-hour hotline 1800 675 398, or your local GP or emergency department, to arrange for testing and appropriate care. You can call BRHS at (03) 5150 3333.

CORONAVIRUS: THE BASICS

What is coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans.

COVID-19 is a new virus that can cause an infection in people, including a severe respiratory illness.

The most recently discovered coronavirus causes coronavirus disease COVID-19.

Wondering if you need to get tested for Coronavirus?

Download DHHS’ self-assessment flowchart to find out.

How is coronavirus spread?

COVID-19 spreads through close contact with an infected person; mostly face-to-face or within a household. It cannot jump across a room or be carried for long distances in the air so we should all go about our lives as normal. 

What is close contact?

Close contact means greater than 15 minutes face-to-face or the sharing of a closed space for more than two hours with a confirmed case.

A close contact could include any person meeting any of the following criteria:

  • living in the same household or household-like setting (for example, a boarding school or hostel)
  • direct contact with the body fluids or laboratory specimens of a confirmed case
  • a person who spent two hours or longer in the same room
  • face-to-face contact for more than 15 minutes with the case in any other setting not listed above.

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

Many people who contract COVID–19 will suffer only mild symptoms. However early indications are that the elderly and people with pre-existing medical conditions are more at risk of experiencing severe symptoms. 

The most common coronavirus symptoms reported include:

  • Fever
  • Breathing difficulties such as breathlessness
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Fatigue or tiredness.

What if I have travelled overseas?

The situation is evolving rapidly as we find out more about this disease. Increasing numbers of countries are reporting cases with rapid increases of coronavirus in many places. 

As such travellers returning from any country outside Australia are now considered at risk of COVID-19.

At this stage, only returning travellers from Iran, Italy, South Korea and China should self- isolate.

If you have returned from international travel in the last 14 days and begin to feel unwell and develop a fever or shortness of breath, a cough or respiratory illness, you should call the dedicated hotline on 1800 675 398 for advice.


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