If you think you may have caught the novel coronavirus, here’s what you should do.

I suspect I have COVID-19. What next?

COVID-19 is dominating the media, so if you wake up with a sore throat or cough it’s understandable if you start to worry you may have contracted the virus. That said, the symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, cough, sore throat, fatigue and shortness of breath can be similar to many other colds and the flu. It’s important to remember that most people displaying these symptoms are likely suffering with a cold or other illness. That said, having one or all of these symptoms can be concerning so here’s some advice on the steps you should take.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 000.

Numbers you can call for advice

National Coronavirus Helpline
The Australian Government has introduced a National Coronavirus Helpline which you can call for advice on 1800 020 080.

24/7 Medibank Nurse Phone Service
Medibank members with hospital cover* can also call our 24/7 Medibank Nurse Phone Service on 1800 644 325, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We have increased our number of qualified health experts to meet the high demand we’re currently experiencing.

*OSHC members should contact the Student Health and Support Line on 1800 887 283.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Symptom Checker
You can also use the healthdirect online symptom checker.

Self-isolate

If you have any kind of cold or flu symptoms, even if they’re mild it’s important to self-isolate immediately.

Contact your GP

If you decide to see your GP there are some steps you should follow.

Call ahead to book an appointment. It’s important you inform your GP of your symptoms, your travel history and if you’ve had any recent contact with someone who has COVID-19.

Your GP will ask you to take precautions when you attend for treatment. These will include staying at least 1.5 metres away from others, wearing a mask if you have one and covering your coughs or sneezes with your elbow.

GP respiratory clinics

The Australian Government is also establishing up to 100 respiratory clinics around the country.

The clinics are being rolled out gradually. You can find out if there is a clinic near you and how to register for an appointment by visiting your state or territory health department or click on one of the links below.

Getting tested

Your GP can assess your symptoms, advise you if you should be tested and help arrange a test for you if required. You can view the Department of Health’s nationally agreed testing criteria here.

Please note, The Department of Health regularly reviews the testing criteria and the states and territories may include additional criteria based on local needs. Your GP will be able to inform you if you meet the current criteria.

After testing

It may take a few days for the test results to come back. It’s important that you self-isolate while you wait for your results.

If you’re diagnosed with COVID-19 you can read about what you should do next here.

COVID-19 Health Assist
We understand that every Medibank member will be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, whether you’re diagnosed with the virus or not.

For that reason, we have created COVID-19 Health Assist to support our members with information, health advice and assistance for those who need it during this time.