Covid-19 information

Information: updated April 3, 2020.

  • Please note that this information will be updated regularly in accordance with medical advice.
  • Dr Sue Reddish, Deakin University Medical Centre.
Netball & Covid-19
  • Please click here for Boroondara Netball Association cancellations, updates & training advice.
What is Covid-19?      
  • Coronaviruses cause many respiratory and gastrointestinal infections (30% of human colds)     
  • Covid-19 is a new strain of the Coronavirus, originating in Wuhan, China 2019.
  • Whilst there has been some connection with live animal markets in China (animal - human transmission), there has also been person - person spread.    
What is a pandemic?
  • Anyone, anywhere can be infected. The last pandemic was Influenza in 2009
Why the fuss?

    1) Many healthy, fit people will recover with no problems. However, those who are vulnerable may become severely ill or die.

  • Vulnerable = aged, immuno-compromised, people with co-morbidities such as HIV, asthma, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, aboriginal communities, group residential settings, poorly controlled diabetes / asthma. Minimising transmission is for the safety of these vulnerable groups.
  • Please note that younger people CAN develop severe infection. The virus is not just affecting the elderly and vulnerable.

    2) "Flattening the curve" - slow the transmission to reduce / flatten out the peak burden of disease on health services capacity.

What are the symptoms?
  • Fever, aches & pains, sore throat, dry cough, fatigue, shortness of breathe (rare = runny nose, diarrhoea)
  • Can be none > mild > severe pneumonia
  • Children generally have very mild disease but may transmit to others ie) elderly grandparents.
How is it spread?
  • Droplet, airborne, direct contact (and possibly faecal transmission).
  • Close contact with an infectious person (incl 24 hrs before their symptoms appear) either directly or via a cough / sneeze.
  • The virus can survive on surfaces for up to 1 week ie) touching door handles /tables contaminated by an infectious person, and then touching your face
Incubation period & Infectivity
  • 2 - 14 days, average 5-6 days
  • 1 infected person would be expected to infect 3 others
  • Virus can be shedding before symptoms even develop (80%)
  • Some people are "super-shedders" = shed more virus for longer
How can you test for it?
  • There are strict criteria in place for testing currently - see below. If you have symptoms but do not fall into one of the epidemiologocal groups, you must STAY AT HOME until the symptoms resolve. You WILL NOT be offered a test anywhere.
  • Nasopharyngeal & throat swab (one swab for both) 
  • Must ring GP or hospital ahead for instructions > DO NOT just turn up for an appointment.

Who is eligible for testing?

pdfSuspected Case -What you need to know

    1. Someone with fever (>38 degress) OR history of a fever OR acute respiratory symptoms


  • international travel anywhere in the last 14 days 
  • OR close contact (not casual contact) with a confirmed case 
  • OR healthcare & aged care, disability and residential care workers or clients
  • OR Aboriginal & Torres Strait Isanders
  • OR cruise ship passengers or crew
  • OR police, child protection, homelessness support face to face workers
  • OR immunosuppressed admitted to hospital
  • OR people living / working in other high risk settings such as boarding schools, prisons etc

    2. Someone with an acute respiratory infection ie) pneumonia, admitted to hospital    

What is close contact?
  • > 15 minutes face to face contact OR > 2 hrs sharing a closed space ie) classroom, house, plane

What is NOT close contact = casual contact?

  • < 15 mins face to face contact OR < 2 hrs sharing a closed space ie) office, extended family, schools

Who is NOT eligible for testing?


Who must self isolate?

pdfSelf Isolation guide

    1) Someone with no symptoms and casual contact with a confirmed case only

  • No action / isolation necessary other than monitor yourself for symptoms

    2) Someone with fever or respiratory symptoms but no recent travel or close contact with a confirmed case

  • Must self-isolate until symptoms have completely resolved

    3) Someone who has just returned from overseas but has no symptoms

  • Must self isolate for 14 days

    4) Someone who has had close contact with a confirmed case but has no symptoms

  • Must self isolate for 14 days from contact
How can I prevent transmission?
  • Self-isolate in circimstances outlined above
  • No gatherings indoor or outdoor of > 2 people unless they are living together
  • Hand hygeine - washing 20 seconds, hand sanitisers, tissue disposal
  • Respiratory hygeine - coughing and sneezing etiquette
  • Social distancing - 1.5 metres, no hand shaking, kissing, high 5s
  • Environmental cleaning - benches, tables, light switches, door handles, phones     Notegym equipment, pools, towels, balls
  • Standard face masks are only useful if you are infected to prevent you transmitting. They are not useful for self-protection.
How can we treat it?
  • There is currently no treatment so symptom control only ie) paracetamol, rest
  • Note: This is a virus so antibiotics are of no use.
Mental Health Resources
  • Looking after your mental health during the Covid-19 > Beyond Blue: click here
  • How to cope with stress related to Covid-19 > headspace: click here

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