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    Coronavirus - Information about COVID-19


    There is significant attention and media coverage around COVID-19, a respiratory illness caused by a new virus. It was first reported in December 2019 in Wuhan City in China.

    The Australian Government has issued a health alert and the Department of Health is monitoring the situation very closely and implementing actions as appropriate and proportionate to the risk.

    The Department of Health states the symptoms of COVID-19 can vary in severity. These symptoms can range from a mild illness to pneumonia and may include fever, cough, fatigue, sore throat, and difficulty breathing. Some people will recover easily, while others may get very sick very quickly.

    To keep informed of the latest information and advice, refer to the Department of Health and specific state and territory health departments. The World Health Organization has also published myth busters to correct some common misconceptions around the illness.

    General precautions to take

    Good hygiene can prevent infection. These measures include:

    • Wash your hands often with soap and water before and after eating as well as after going to the toilet.
    • Cough and sneeze into your elbow.
    • Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough (including touching, kissing, hugging, and other intimate contact).
    • If you have had a relevant travel history or COVID-19 contact history and develop symptoms, contact your regular doctor immediately for further advice. You should telephone the health clinic or hospital before you arrive and tell them your travel history or that you may have been in contact with a potential case of COVID-19. You can also contact the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

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