News

Practical steps for dealing with coronavirus

By David Rak

This story – and all stories on our Facebook and websites connected with coronavirus – is free to read as part of the Seymour Telegraph commitment to community health and safety.

“Look after yourself, be considerate of others and support the vulnerable living in the community.”

That’s the message from the team at Goulburn River Group Practice (GRGP) on how to best deal with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness with varying symptoms ranging from a mild cough to pneumonia.

There is a 14-day incubation period and symptoms include fever, coughing, sore throat, fatigue and shortness of breath.

Telephone consultations are provided at medical clinics if a person meets eligible criteria.

Eligible criteria are that a person has been diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus or have been required to isolate themselves in quarantine with home isolation guidance issued by Australian Health Protection Principal Committee.

A telephone consultation is also available if a person is considered to be more susceptible to the virus by being either at least 70 years old, at least 50 years old and of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent, pregnant, a parent of a child under 12 months, a person under treatment for chronic health conditions or are immune compromised.

GRGP practice manager Catriona Jarman said there were several measures people could take to prevent the development of coronavirus.

“We encourage people to eat a balanced diet and consider taking a daily multivitamin,” she said.

“Participating in mild to moderate exercise like walking, practising basic hygiene procedures and social distancing are all good habits.

“People also need to plan sensibly for periods of isolation by ensuring they only buy what they and their family need.

“Panic buying and hoarding medicines, food items and cleaning products makes life difficult for people in vulnerable positions.”

Ms Jarman said influenza vaccinations were now available for the people in the 65 or older age group at medical clinics and pharmacies.

“Although this does not offer protection against the coronavirus, it will assist in maintaining a person’s health as the colder part of the year approaches,” she said.

“The wearing of masks is only appropriate if the wearer is experiencing symptoms – it is not a protection for healthy people against catching the virus. It is far better to practice hygiene procedures.

“And to ensure staff protection, anyone experiencing coronavirus symptoms should call their medical clinic prior to attending.”

Information regarding the spread of the virus in Australia is changing daily. Therefore, to receive the most updated information, visit the COVID-19 information page at health.gov.au

A 24-hour coronavirus telephone hotline is also available by phoning 1800 020 080.