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COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Information

COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Information

On this webpage you can find advice for GPs and community members on how to identify, manage and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please note that the situation in Australia with regards to novel coronavirus is changing continually and official local and national government sources will be able to provide the most up-to-date information.

Information for health professionals

For information on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout process in Australia please refer to the Australian Government Department of Health Epidemiology and COVID-19 Vaccine Roadmap. This strategy outlines sites and priority populations for initial vaccinations, and the phases in which vaccine doses will be made available in Australia.

Australia’s COVID-19 Vaccine National Rollout Strategy identifies:

  • priority populations for vaccination, and the phases in which vaccines will be provided in Australia
  • details for how vaccines will reach frontline healthcare workers, quarantine and border workers, and aged and disability care residents and workers
  • initial locations, across Australia, at which vaccines will be administered.

For the latest information on the COVID-19 vaccination process for GPs please visit these RACGP webpages:

We have compiled some responses to FAQs that your patients may have – please click here to read.

Latest testing criteria from NSW Health

https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/covid-19/Pages/advice-for-professionals.aspx

 

Updated information and advice for health professionals

 

Coronavirus at a glance

This Australian Government Department of Health infographic is designed to give an overview of the COVID-19 situation in Australia and is updated daily. Click here to view the infographic.

 

Business continuity: financial assistance for General Practices struggling due to COVID-19

Temporary measures under the Practice Incentives Program (PIP) and Workforce Incentive Program (WIP) to help ensure business continuity: click here.

 

Recommendations for managing vulnerable healthcare workers are available at the NSW Health website.

 

Supporting patients and your local community during COVID-19

Aboriginal communities

Activating family networks during the pandemic

Culturally and linguistically diverse communities: information in your language

Child protection issues and practice considerations

Partnering with women and children experiencing violence

Talking to children and families about COVID-19

 

Supporting people with disabilities during COVID-19

This is designed to provide training on protecting yourself and the people you are caring for from infection with COVID-19. The training takes approximately 30 minutes.  Training is accessible here: https://covid-19training.com.au/

The Sydney North HealthPathways team have completed a rapid localisation of the pathway Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Information. If you have not accessed HealthPathways before, or if you have any questions, please contact the HealthPathways Team: healthpathways@snhn.org.au

COVID-19 outbreak preparation: Advice for GPS with patients in Aged Care Facilities

Click here to view the tip sheet. This document is the first in a series to support GPs working in residential aged care facilities (RACFs) and is designed to support involvement in RACF COVID-19 ou-break preparedness activities. It incorporates the expertise of a range of stakeholders including our local Emergency Response Outbreak Advisory Group GPs, Dr James Hardy and Prof Sue Kurrle, Geriatricians in Northern Sydney LHD.

 

Process for Residents Developing COVID-19 Symptoms

During Regular Hours

Northern Sydney Local health District (NSLHD) mobile ‘Swab Team’ is available to attend Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACFs) to complete COVID-19 swabbing. The ‘Swab Team’ can be contacted on 0438 613 273 during these hours:

  • Monday to Sunday (7 days)
  • 9am – 5pm

After Hours

Outside of these hours, NSLHD does not provide a mobile COVID-19 testing service.

If a RACF resident develops COVID-19 like symptoms outside of these hours, please implement the following recommendations:

    • Contact the resident’s GP for medical advice and/or follow your usual after hours GP protocols.
    • Isolate the resident and implement contact and droplet precautions.
    • Utilise appropriate PPE.
    • If the resident remains well enough to remain in the RACF, contact the ‘Swab Team’ at 9am the following day.
    • If the resident becomes acutely unwell, requiring urgent medical attention, call an ambulance on 000 and advise that the resident is potentially COVID-19 positive.

 

Department of Health newsletter for aged care sector

This specific COVID-19-related newsletter ensures those in the aged care sector have access to best-practice information and resources. You can subscribe to the newsletter here or view web versions of past editions here.

 

Helping patients with Dementia navigate COVID-19

Dementia Australia have released four help sheets which outline tips for people living with dementia and the carers or friends and family of those living with dementia.

To find out more click here.

 

Requesting PPE

Aged care providers can request PPE by sending an email to agedcareCOVIDPPE@health.gov.au

Further information on PPE for Aged Care providers can be found here.

 

Information for discharging new and returning residents

https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/diseases/Pages/covid-19-discharging-residents.aspx

 

Guidance for Aged Care Facilities – NSW Health

https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/diseases/Pages/coronavirus-racf-guidance.aspx

 

Flu Vaccination Information for Aged Care Facilities

https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/Influenza/Pages/residential-care.aspx

 

Guidelines for Aged Care Facilities on COVID-19 outbreaks – Dept of Health

https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidelines-for-outbreaks-in-residential-care-facilities

 

Secondary Triage – Update Information for Residential Aged Care Facility Health Workers

https://sydneynorthhealthnetwork.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Secondary-Triage-for-Residential-Aged-Care-Facilities-Updated-Information-for-RACF-Healthcare-Workers.pdf

Secondary Triage – Information for Patients and Their Families

https://sydneynorthhealthnetwork.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Secondary-Triage-for-Residential-Aged-Care-Facilities-Information-for-RACF-Patients-and-Families-V3.pdf

 

Palliative Care

Advance Care Planning during the time of COVID-19:
https://www.advancecareplanning.org.au/for-health-and-care-workers/covid-19-web#/

 

Caring at Home package for carers during Covid

https://www.caringathomeproject.com.au/Portals/13/Documents/caring@home-FactSheet-COVID-UPDATE-WEB.pdf

 

Palliative care resources for GPs during COVID-19

https://www.caresearch.com.au/caresearch/tabid/5971/Default.aspx

 

Dementia

National Dementia Helpline, 1800 100 500 – for  all health professionals supporting people living with dementia, and family carers in need of support during this difficult time.

Respiratory high-risk therapies

The NSW Government’s Agency for Clinical Innovation (ACI) has released some resources on the use of respiratory therapies that generate aerosolised particles. These therapies are capable of transmitting respiratory viruses including COVID-19. For this reason, they are considered high-risk.

The documents below provide some guidance around how to mitigate the risk of these therapies to keep people safe. There are also some alternatives that should be considered. These documents were informed by an evidence review, and developed by experts from the respiratory, intensive care, anaesthetics, paediatrics and infection control disciplines.

From 13 March 2020 to 31 March 2021, new temporary MBS telehealth items have been made available to help reduce the risk of community transmission of COVID-19 and provide protection for patients and health care providers.

  • The list of telehealth services has continued to expand since 13 March. The latest factsheet provides details on all current telehealth items.
  • The new temporary MBS telehealth items are available to GPs, medical practitioners, nurse practitioners, participating midwives and allied health providers.
  • A service may only be provided by telehealth where it is safe and clinically appropriate to do so.
  • From 6 April 2020, it is a legislative requirement that the new telehealth services must be bulk billed for Commonwealth concession card holders, children under 16 years old and patients who are more vulnerable to COVID-19.
  • Health providers may apply their usual billing practices to the telehealth items for patients who do not fit the above criteria. Providers are expected to obtain informed financial consent from patients prior to providing the service; providing details regarding their fees, including any out-of-pocket costs.
  • From 30 March 2020, the bulk billing incentive Medicare fees have doubled for items relating to General Practice, Diagnostic Imaging and Pathology services. These items can be claimed with the new temporary MBS telehealth items where appropriate. The new fees can be found on MBS Online.

SNHN can help primary care practitioners and specialists get set up with a free, fit-for-purpose telehealth solution designed for health professionals. Email your query to digitalhealth@snhn.org.au

Temporary changes to locum tenens

The locum tenens period for health professionals is now 12 weeks. The Department of Health has temporarily extended the period to support the COVID-19 response. The locum tenens are provisions in the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) that allow eligible doctors and any other health professionals claiming Medicare benefits to use their existing provider number at a new practice, based on the following:

  • you’re operating from the new location for less than 12 weeks
  • you’ll return to your usual practice location after this time.

This arrangement isn’t available for restricted health professionals. This includes doctors who need a section 19AB exemption, a 3GA placement or are participants of the OMPs program. Restricted health professionals will still need to apply for an additional provider number to get Medicare benefits from a new location.

Adapted from: https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/organisations/health-professionals/subjects/coronavirus-information-health-professionals#locumtenens

The Department of Health has issued a ‘Guide for Prescribers’ fact sheet, containing interim arrangements for prescriptions to support telehealth services.

It contains instructions on how to correctly send prescriptions to pharmacies via email, text message or fax, as well as other guidance on medicine delivery services, and existing prescriptions and repeats.

NSW Government My Health Learning Videos

These videos are divided into the three categories of airborne, contact and droplet precautions. Click here to watch.

 

Department of Health: Guidance on use of personal protective equipment (PPE) in non-inpatient healthcare setting during the COVID-19 outbreak

Download PDF here

 

Video series: how to use personal protective equipment (PPE)

The RACGP has released a handy series of short videos on using personal protective equipment. See below:

  1. How to sanitise your hands
  2. How to don PPE
  3. How to fit a P2/N95 mask
  4. How to remove and dispose of PPE

You can view the full version here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AG0iDJGKUmc&t=42s (7 mins)

 

Mask-fitting guidelines

https://sydneynorthhealthnetwork.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Principles-of-Fit-checking-chart2.pdf

 

Using PPE in aged care

This flowchart outlines when and how aged care workers should wear personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect themselves and others against coronavirus (COVID-19): https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-when-to-use-personal-protective-equipment-in-aged-care

 

Advice on wearing masks in the community

The NSW Government is strongly encouraging greater use of masks in high-risk public settings to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The advice from the NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant specifically recommends:

  • the use of face masks in indoor settings where physical distancing is hard to maintain, such as on public transport or in supermarkets
  • the use of face masks (where practical) in indoor settings with a higher risk of transmission, such as for the staff of hospitality and customer-facing venues i.e. cafes, restaurants, pubs and clubs
  • during attendance at places of worship.

For more information, click here.

Distribution of masks through Primary Health Networks

Primary Health Networks have been given the role of distributing masks to practices with demonstrated need, including:

  • where there is no local supply available commercially
  • where practices have a population, which may be more likely to have been exposed to the novel coronavirus
  • where practices have an unusual number of patients presenting with respiratory symptoms

Eligibility:

  • GP respiratory clinics
  • General practices
  • Community pharmacies
  • After-hours GP home visiting services
  • Medical deputising services
  • Nurse practitioner-owned or -led primary care practices
  • Allied health

Community pharmacies are eligible to access the supply for the use of their staff when there is no available commercial supply and they have significant contact with people presenting with fever or respiratory symptoms.

Allied health professionals are eligible for limited access to the supply for the use of their staff, where there is no available commercial supply and they are working in higher-risk clinical areas and with higher-risk vulnerable patients. Primary Health Networks have been given a one-off supply of surgical masks for this purpose. See also guidance for PHNs for distribution of PPE to allied health professionals.

Advice for residential aged care facilities. If Commonwealth funded aged care providers are experiencing shortages and are unable to obtain masks from any other source may be eligible to request a small supply from the National Stockpile by emailing AgedCareCOVIDPPE@health.gov.au.

For more information, please refer to the latest guidance for the distribution of masks through Primary Health Networks.

Eligible practices, clinics and pharmacies can use the order form below to request a small supply of masks.

Please note: Sydney North Health Network has only been supplied with surgical and P2 masks for distribution across Northern Sydney. We are unable to supply hand sanitiser, gowns, gloves or goggles.

 

Mask Request Form

Sydney North Health Network has received supplies of masks from two different sources:

  • Surgical and P2 masks from the National Medical Stockpile
  • Donation of surgical masks from the Society for Health Administration Programs in Education (SHAPE)

Sydney North Health Network would like to extend our sincere thanks to the Society for Health Administration Programs in Education (SHAPE) for their generous donation of masks in response to COVID-19. We thank SHAPE for supporting our healthcare community in this time of need. Please refer to our disclaimer on donated masks for details.

    Do I need to get tested for COVID-19?

    Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should get tested.

    People with coronavirus may experience any of the following:

    • fever
    • cough
    • tiredness (fatigue)
    • sore throat
    • shortness of breath
    • loss of taste or
    • loss of smell.

    If you have COVID-19 symptoms you can:

    • call your GP
    • call Healthdirect on 1800 022 222 or use the Healthdirect symptom checker here
    • visit a respiratory clinic (see details below)
    • visit a NSW Health COVID-19 clinic (see details below)
    • In an emergency dial 000

    You can use the healthdirect online Coronavirus Symptom Checker tool at the bottom of this section to find out what, if any, actions you need to take to protect yourself and your community.

     

    COVID-19 testing options: what are the differences?

    From Respiratory Clinics to self-collection test kits at home, click here to find out which testing option is best for you.

    Where can I get tested?

    SuburbOrganisationAddressOpening hoursDaysReferral required - Y/NPhoneDetails
    AvalonAvalon Bowling Club (Laverty Drive-Through Clinic)
    4 Bowling Green Ln, Avalon Beach8am – 10pm
    Open 7 daysN
    AvalonCareel Bay Laverty Pathology Drive through ClinicCareel Bay Playing Fields car park
    Barrenjoey Road, Avalon Beach, NSW, 2107
    8am - 6pm7 daysN
    BeecroftBeecroft Respiratory ClinicShop 8a, Beecroft Village Arcade, 6-8 Hannah St, Beecroft8am - 1pmMon - FriY9484 1552
    Appointment only
    BrookvaleWarriewood Histopath Drive throughRat Park, 1472 Pittwater Road, Brookvale8am to 10pmOpen 7 daysN
    BrookvaleBrookvale Community Health Centre
    612-624 Pittwater Road, Brookvale
    8am to 10pm Open 7 daysN
    Chatswood4Cyte ChatswoodShop 11, Ground Floor, 427-441, Victoria Avenue, Chatswood
    8am - 4pm Mon - Fri
    9am - 1pm Sat - Sun
    Mon - Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat - Sun: 9am - 1pm
    YDo not leave car, call on arrival 0435 385 385
    CromerCromer Park Histopath Drive-through Pathology120 South Creek Rd, Cromer, NSW9am - 4pm7 days
    Dee WhyDee Why GP led respiratory clinicGround Floor, 5 Mooramba Rd, Dee Why8am - 5pm, Mon - Fri (except Thurs)
    Thurs: 8:30am - 5pm
    8am - 5pm, Mon - Fri (except Thurs)
    Thurs: 8:30am - 5pm
    N02 8416 5005
    Call 8416 5005 if unable to book online
    Frenchs Forest
    Warringah Aquatic Centre Drive through1 Aquatic Drive, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 5pm
    Open 7 days
    N
    Frenchs ForestNorthern Beaches Hospital
    105 Frenchs Forest Road (West), Frenchs Forest (Rear of Emergency Department)
    8am - 5pm
    Open 7 daysN
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest 4Cyte Pathology Drive throughRear car park, 4, Russell Avenue, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 6pm, Mon - Fri
    8am - 2pm, Sat - Sun
    8am - 6pm, Mon - Fri
    8am - 2pm, Sat - Sun
    N13 42 98
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest MedLab Pathology8 Hilmer Street, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri
    9am - 12pm on Sat
    8am - 11am on Sun
    8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri
    9am - 12pm on Sat
    8am - 11am on Sun
    N02 8745 6500
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology5 Forest Way, 2086, Frenchs Forest8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri8am - 4pm, Mon - FriY1800 026 622 or
    (02) 9451 6962
    Appointment required
    KillaraKillara Histopath Drive through
    28 Stanhope Road, Killara
    9am - 4pm7 daysN02 9878 8111
    Macquarie ParkRyde Respiratory Clinic11 Khartoum Rd, Macquarie Park8am - 9pm7 days. Closing on Tuesday 26th Jan to relocate. Reopening on Thursday 4th Feb in a new location TBC.N02 9216 7676
    ManlyManly Histopath Drive through and walk in
    Old Manly Hospital, 150 Darley Road, Manly
    9am - 4pm
    7 daysN02 9878 8111
    Mona ValeMona Vale HospitalGate 3, Coronation Street, Mona Vale
    Open 24 hoursOpen 7 daysN
    Mona ValeMona Vale 4Cyte Pathology61 Darley Street, 2130, Mona Vale8am - 8pm, Mon - Thurs. Closed Fridays. 8am - 8pm Sat to Sun.8am - 8pm, Mon - Thurs. Closed Fridays. 8am - 8pm Sat to Sun.N
    NarrabeenNorth Narrabeen Clinical Labs Pathology Drive through Clinic
    1416 Pittwater Road, Narrabeen
    10am - 4pm
    Mon - FriN13 93 55
    NewportNewport pop up clinicNewport Community Centre, 11-13 The Boulevard, Newport8am to 10pm
    Open 7 daysN
    NewportNewport Surf Club ACL Drive through Pathology Clinic394 Barranjoey Road, Newport, NSW, 21068am - 10pm7 daysY1300 134 111
    North RydeMacquarie Park DHM Drive through
    95 Epping Road, North Ryde
    8am - 4.15pm Mon - Fri
    8.30am - 3.30pm Sat
    8am - 4.15pm Mon - Fri
    8.30am - 3.30pm Sat
    NNot available for children under 5
    North RydeNorth Ryde 4CyteUndercover car park, Lower Ground Floor, 1, Lucknow Road, North Ryde
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 6pm
    Sat: 9am - 5pm
    Sun: 10am - 4pm
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 6pm
    Sat: 9am - 5pm
    Sun: 10am - 4pm
    N
    North RydeNorth Ryde Laverty Drive through
    60 Waterloo Road, North Ryde
    Mon-Fri: 7.30am - 6.00pm
    Sat-Sun: 8.00am - 4pm
    Mon-Fri: 7.30am - 6.00pm
    Sat-Sun: 8.00am - 4pm
    NAll ages
    Palm BeachPalm Beach Laverty Pathology Drive-through ClinicGovernor Phillip Park Car Park
    Entry off Beach Rd, Palm Beach
    8am-10pm, 7 days.
    Usual operating hours over the Christmas period.
    8am-10pm, 7 days.
    Usual operating hours over the Christmas period.
    N
    RosevilleNorthshore Roseville Respiratory clinic132 Pacific Highway, Roseville
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat: 8am - 12pm
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat: 8am - 12pm
    N02 9416 9742
    Appointment required
    St IvesSt Ives Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology Drive throughSt Ives Showground, 450, Mona Vale Road, St Ives8am - 4pm
    7 daysN02 9988 4776
    TurramurraTurramurra, Hillview Community Centre
    1334 Pacific Highway, Turramurra
    8am - 4pmMon - FriN02 9024 9000
    West Pennant HillsWest Pennant Hills Histopath Drive through
    55 Coonara Avenue, West Pennant Hills
    9am - 4pm7 daysN02 9878 8111

    HotDoc

    HotDoc has provided detailed instructions on how you can create a coronavirus alert message to your online bookings profile to ensure thorough triage protocols are used during this heightened time. Visit: https://support.hotdoc.com.au/hc/en-gb/articles/360038868532-Creating-an-alert-message-for-an-emerging-health-concern.

     

    HealthEngine

    Practices who use HealthEngine for appointment bookings are encouraged to update their initial booking message to request patients call their GP, Emergency Department or healthdirect for advice before attending if they have symptoms and meet the criteria that could indicate novel coronavirus.

    To update this message, practices need to log into their HealthEngine profile, go to Practice Admin Settings, click on Practice Policy and from here the first message that potential patients see can be customised with this information. If you need more information or would like additional support, please contact HealthEngine directly on the following phone number: 1300 377 639.

     

    Docbook

    The Docbook team is able to implement alerts for your practice by request. Please contact them at info@doctorbook.com.au with the exact text that you would like displayed and they can implement this for you.

    Community Information

    Australia’s COVID-19 vaccination program will commence with priority population groups, find out more about the national roll-out strategy here.

     

    The Therapeutic Goods Administration have created a COVID-19 vaccine information page for consumers and health professionals which answers common questions about how the TGA assesses and monitors a vaccine for safety, quality and effectiveness.

    Where can I find trusted sources of information?

    Whilst media coverage of COVID-19 can help  you feel informed, it can also trigger feelings of anxiety and agitation. To stay up to date with accurate, factual information you can access:

    Sometimes the information provided by the NSW Ministry of Health and Australian Government Department of Health may differ. This is because the NSW Government provides information  specifically for NSW, which has the highest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19. The Australian Government provides information which is relevant for the whole of Australia – as a result, their messages may not be identical.

     

    Multilingual Resources

    NSW Health COVID-19 Information and resources in languages other than English

    COVID-19 in-language resources from NSW Multicultural Health Communication Service

    Translated resources for health workers and communities

    Information from the Australian Government in your language  Find information on health, education, business and financial support, visas and the border during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    SBS Radio Coronavirus Information in Your Language

     

    Australian Government Department of Health COVID-19 Fact Sheets

    COVID-19 – What you need to know

    COVID-19 – Information on social distancing 

    COVID-19 – Information about routine environmental cleaning and disinfection in the community 

    COVID-19 information for hotel guests 

     

    NSW Health and Australian Government Department of Health Information

    NSW Health Novel coronavirus FAQs

    Australian Government Department of Health Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Information 

    Australian Government Department of Health Watch

    Australian Government Department of Health Novel coronavirus (2019-nCov) information on the use of surgical masks.

     

    Healthdirect 

    healthdirect website coronavirus (COVID-19) hub – first point of reference for reliable information about COVID-19

    healthdirect Symptom Checker – an online tool that allows people to check their symptoms using a simple self-guided process.

     

    Information for people who are deaf or hearing-impaired

    Expression Australia is providing regular Auslan-only video updates accompanied by a English text summary – view them here. These will also be posted on their social media channels: FacebookInstagramTwitter.

     

    Supporting people with disabilities during COVID-19

    Person-centred emergency preparedness planning for COVID-19

    • information on how to assist people with disability in planning for how they will manage the impacts of the pandemic

    Coronavirus (COVID-19) hospital companion for people with disability

    • information on how to assist a person with disability if they need to go to hospital

    Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Information for Families

    • information for families of a person with intellectual or developmental disability during the COVID-19 pandemic

    Information for Disability Support Providers and Workers

    • information and guidance for disability support providers and workers who provide health care to people with intellectual or developmental disability

    Guide to personal protective equipment (PPE) for disability care providers

    • information and guidance for disability care providers on the use of PPE

    Information for support workers and carers on coronavirus (COVID-19) testing for people with disability

    • information on who should be tested, where testing can be done, and how to explain the testing process to a person with disability

     

     

    Community feedback

    Do you have a ‘good news’ story about your community? If so, the Community Engagement Team at SNHN would love to hear from you. Perhaps a local business is supporting the vulnerable or you know someone who is going ‘above and beyond’ to help others. Email your story and any accompanying photographs to community@snhn.org.au

    Do I need to get tested for COVID-19?

    Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should get tested.

    People with coronavirus may experience any of the following:

    • fever
    • cough
    • tiredness (fatigue)
    • sore throat
    • shortness of breath
    • loss of taste or
    • loss of smell.

    If you have COVID-19 symptoms you can:

    • call your GP
    • call Healthdirect on 1800 022 222 or use the Healthdirect symptom checker here
    • visit a respiratory clinic (see details below)
    • visit a NSW Health COVID-19 clinic (see details below)
    • In an emergency dial 000

    You can use the healthdirect online Coronavirus Symptom Checker tool at the bottom of this section to find out what, if any, actions you need to take to protect yourself and your community.

     

    COVID-19 testing options: what are the differences?

    From Respiratory Clinics to self-collection test kits at home, click here to find out which testing option is best for you.

    Where can I get tested?

    SuburbOrganisationAddressOpening hoursDaysReferral required - Y/NPhoneDetails
    AvalonAvalon Bowling Club (Laverty Drive-Through Clinic)
    4 Bowling Green Ln, Avalon Beach8am – 10pm
    Open 7 daysN
    AvalonCareel Bay Laverty Pathology Drive through ClinicCareel Bay Playing Fields car park
    Barrenjoey Road, Avalon Beach, NSW, 2107
    8am - 6pm7 daysN
    BeecroftBeecroft Respiratory ClinicShop 8a, Beecroft Village Arcade, 6-8 Hannah St, Beecroft8am - 1pmMon - FriY9484 1552
    Appointment only
    BrookvaleWarriewood Histopath Drive throughRat Park, 1472 Pittwater Road, Brookvale8am to 10pmOpen 7 daysN
    BrookvaleBrookvale Community Health Centre
    612-624 Pittwater Road, Brookvale
    8am to 10pm Open 7 daysN
    Chatswood4Cyte ChatswoodShop 11, Ground Floor, 427-441, Victoria Avenue, Chatswood
    8am - 4pm Mon - Fri
    9am - 1pm Sat - Sun
    Mon - Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat - Sun: 9am - 1pm
    YDo not leave car, call on arrival 0435 385 385
    CromerCromer Park Histopath Drive-through Pathology120 South Creek Rd, Cromer, NSW9am - 4pm7 days
    Dee WhyDee Why GP led respiratory clinicGround Floor, 5 Mooramba Rd, Dee Why8am - 5pm, Mon - Fri (except Thurs)
    Thurs: 8:30am - 5pm
    8am - 5pm, Mon - Fri (except Thurs)
    Thurs: 8:30am - 5pm
    N02 8416 5005
    Call 8416 5005 if unable to book online
    Frenchs Forest
    Warringah Aquatic Centre Drive through1 Aquatic Drive, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 5pm
    Open 7 days
    N
    Frenchs ForestNorthern Beaches Hospital
    105 Frenchs Forest Road (West), Frenchs Forest (Rear of Emergency Department)
    8am - 5pm
    Open 7 daysN
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest 4Cyte Pathology Drive throughRear car park, 4, Russell Avenue, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 6pm, Mon - Fri
    8am - 2pm, Sat - Sun
    8am - 6pm, Mon - Fri
    8am - 2pm, Sat - Sun
    N13 42 98
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest MedLab Pathology8 Hilmer Street, Frenchs Forest
    8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri
    9am - 12pm on Sat
    8am - 11am on Sun
    8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri
    9am - 12pm on Sat
    8am - 11am on Sun
    N02 8745 6500
    Frenchs ForestFrenchs Forest Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology5 Forest Way, 2086, Frenchs Forest8am - 4pm, Mon - Fri8am - 4pm, Mon - FriY1800 026 622 or
    (02) 9451 6962
    Appointment required
    KillaraKillara Histopath Drive through
    28 Stanhope Road, Killara
    9am - 4pm7 daysN02 9878 8111
    Macquarie ParkRyde Respiratory Clinic11 Khartoum Rd, Macquarie Park8am - 9pm7 days. Closing on Tuesday 26th Jan to relocate. Reopening on Thursday 4th Feb in a new location TBC.N02 9216 7676
    ManlyManly Histopath Drive through and walk in
    Old Manly Hospital, 150 Darley Road, Manly
    9am - 4pm
    7 daysN02 9878 8111
    Mona ValeMona Vale HospitalGate 3, Coronation Street, Mona Vale
    Open 24 hoursOpen 7 daysN
    Mona ValeMona Vale 4Cyte Pathology61 Darley Street, 2130, Mona Vale8am - 8pm, Mon - Thurs. Closed Fridays. 8am - 8pm Sat to Sun.8am - 8pm, Mon - Thurs. Closed Fridays. 8am - 8pm Sat to Sun.N
    NarrabeenNorth Narrabeen Clinical Labs Pathology Drive through Clinic
    1416 Pittwater Road, Narrabeen
    10am - 4pm
    Mon - FriN13 93 55
    NewportNewport pop up clinicNewport Community Centre, 11-13 The Boulevard, Newport8am to 10pm
    Open 7 daysN
    NewportNewport Surf Club ACL Drive through Pathology Clinic394 Barranjoey Road, Newport, NSW, 21068am - 10pm7 daysY1300 134 111
    North RydeMacquarie Park DHM Drive through
    95 Epping Road, North Ryde
    8am - 4.15pm Mon - Fri
    8.30am - 3.30pm Sat
    8am - 4.15pm Mon - Fri
    8.30am - 3.30pm Sat
    NNot available for children under 5
    North RydeNorth Ryde 4CyteUndercover car park, Lower Ground Floor, 1, Lucknow Road, North Ryde
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 6pm
    Sat: 9am - 5pm
    Sun: 10am - 4pm
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 6pm
    Sat: 9am - 5pm
    Sun: 10am - 4pm
    N
    North RydeNorth Ryde Laverty Drive through
    60 Waterloo Road, North Ryde
    Mon-Fri: 7.30am - 6.00pm
    Sat-Sun: 8.00am - 4pm
    Mon-Fri: 7.30am - 6.00pm
    Sat-Sun: 8.00am - 4pm
    NAll ages
    Palm BeachPalm Beach Laverty Pathology Drive-through ClinicGovernor Phillip Park Car Park
    Entry off Beach Rd, Palm Beach
    8am-10pm, 7 days.
    Usual operating hours over the Christmas period.
    8am-10pm, 7 days.
    Usual operating hours over the Christmas period.
    N
    RosevilleNorthshore Roseville Respiratory clinic132 Pacific Highway, Roseville
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat: 8am - 12pm
    Mon-Fri: 8am - 4pm
    Sat: 8am - 12pm
    N02 9416 9742
    Appointment required
    St IvesSt Ives Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology Drive throughSt Ives Showground, 450, Mona Vale Road, St Ives8am - 4pm
    7 daysN02 9988 4776
    TurramurraTurramurra, Hillview Community Centre
    1334 Pacific Highway, Turramurra
    8am - 4pmMon - FriN02 9024 9000
    West Pennant HillsWest Pennant Hills Histopath Drive through
    55 Coonara Avenue, West Pennant Hills
    9am - 4pm7 daysN02 9878 8111

    It is important to ensure you are still taking care of your health during this unprecedented time. GPs and Allied Health Practitioners are here for you during COVID-19.

    Practices are taking extra measures to ensure patient welfare, so it is still safe to visit your GP, Physio, Podiatrist or Dietician.

    If you have a chronic disease, or if you are concerned about a change to your health, you must visit a health professional.

    You can contact your local practice to book a face-to-face appointment or arrange a telehealth consultation over the phone.

    The following videos have been designed to provide you with further information about using health care services during COVID-19.

    WE'RE HERE FOR YOU: Healthcare is open

    It is safe to return to your GPs, specialists, allied health professionals and hospitals during this time to receive regular healthcare.

    WE'RE HERE FOR YOU: Healthcare is open (Professor Sue Kurrle)

    Geriatrician, Professor Sue Kurrle, tells us why older Australians should look after their health in the times of COVID-19. It is safe to return to your GPs, specialists, allied health professionals and hospitals during this time to receive regular healthcare.

    WE'RE HERE FOR YOU - Healthcare is open so see your GP (RACGP President Dr Harry Nespolon)

    RACGP President, Dr Harry Nespolon shares the importance of maintaining your healthcare appointments during COVID-19.

    WE'RE HERE FOR YOU - Looking after your mental & physical health (Clinical and Counselling Psychologist Ros Knight)

    Clinical and Counselling Psychologist, Ros Knight, shares the importance of looking after your physical and mental health in the times of COVID-19.

    WE'RE HERE FOR YOU - Healthcare is open so visit your GP today! (Professor Simon Willcock)

    Local GP, Professor Simon Willcock shares the importance of maintaining your regular health check-ups during COVID-19.

    What is it?

    Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified.

    Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was discovered in China in late 2019 when number of people in the province of Wuhan sought medical advice for pneumonia-like symptoms. When tested by doctors, it was discovered that these individuals had developed a strain of coronavirus that hadn’t been seen before.

    What are the symptoms?

    Coronavirus symptoms include fever, flu-like symptoms (coughing, sore throat, head aches) and difficulty breathing. Severity can range from from mild illness to pneumonia.

    Experts believe that this outbreak is likely to have originated in an animal species and spread to humans. Some countries, including Australia, have reported human-to-human transmission.

    How is it spread?

    Human coronaviruses are spread from someone with confirmed coronavirus to other close contacts with that person through contaminated droplets spread by coughing or sneezing, or by contact with contaminated hands, surfaces or objects.

    To help stop the spread of COVID-19 everyone should:

    • Find out what you can and can’t do in NSW under the new laws. Follow the rules and stay safe whether you are working, visiting family and friends, or going out.
    • Practice good hygiene measures
      – make sure ​you clean your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand rub
      – cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with tissue or a flexed elbow
      – avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms
      – clean and disinfect your home or business to help to prevent the virus from spreading from contaminated surfaces
      – stay at home if you feel unwell or are experiencing any symptoms
    • Practice social distancing You should stay at least 1.5m away from others. Avoid physical greetings of any kind such as hugs or handshakes.
    • Wear a mask in some situations – The NSW Government is strongly encouraging greater use of masks in high-risk public settings to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The advice from the NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant specifically recommends:
      • the use of face masks in indoor settings where physical distancing is hard to maintain, such as on public transport or in supermarkets
      • the use of face masks (where practical) in indoor settings with a higher risk of transmission, such as for the staff of hospitality and customer-facing venues i.e. cafes, restaurants, pubs and clubs
      • during attendance at places of worship.

      For more information, click here.

      For a quick guide on how to wear a mask, click here. (NB: this resource is available on 67 other languages here.)

     

    How to wear a medical mask safely:

    Some people should:

     

    Australian Government Department of Health COVID-19 Resources

    Information on social distancing

    Information about routine environmental cleaning and disinfection in the community

     

    Posters for your home or workplace – effective handwashing or use of alcohol-based handrub

    If you have been identified as a contact of a person with confirmed COVID-19 infection in Australia, the local public health unit will contact you with advice. You need to isolate yourself at home for 14 days after contact with the infected person, and to monitor your health and report any symptoms.

    Person-to-person spread of coronaviruses generally occurs between people who are close contacts with one another. A close contact is typically someone who has been face to face for at least 15 minutes, or been in the same closed space for at least 2 hours, with a person that was infectious. The public health unit will keep in touch with people who are close contacts of patients with COVID-19 infection. If any symptoms develop contacts must call the public health unit to report those symptoms.

     

    Click here for NSW Government advice on who needs to self-isolate, and how

     

    If your contact with the person was less than this, there is a much smaller risk of you being infected. However, as a precaution you must still monitor your health until 14 days after you were last exposed to the infectious person. If you develop symptoms including a fever and/or respiratory signs, please call ahead to talk to a doctor or call healthdirect on 1800 022 222. Tell your doctor that you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. The doctor may tell you to attend your nearest emergency department – if so when you arrive, immediately tell staff you have had contact with someone with COVID-19.

    More information about home isolation is available for:

    Mental and Emotional Wellbeing

    Many aspects of life are affected by a pandemic. Most people have little experience of an event like COVID-19 and it can be quite overwhelming when your health, social life, employment and financial situation are impacted. It is important to look after your mental health during this time. You can do this by:

     

    Physical care

    Nutrition

    Exercise

    Although it is may be more challenging to stay fit when self-quarantining, daily exercise is critical to overall physical and mental health. You could take up running, yoga, or other home workouts. There are many free online guides and mobile apps to guide you through home workouts. Some of these include:

     

    What if I need to see a doctor?


    If you need to see a doctor, call (don’t visit) your local practice. The staff will help you decide whether you require a face-to-face consultation, or a consultation over the phone or by video (‘telehealth’).

    • Telehealth is designed to protect you, your GP and the wider community by reducing the number of people visiting GP waiting rooms, where the virus could potentially spread
    • If you have symptoms such as fever, shortness of breath, headache, cough, sore throat or muscle aches, your doctor may refer you to a Respiratory Clinic or an Emergency Department. If you need a prescription your doctor will send this directly to your local pharmacy where you can collect it, or your pharmacy may be able to deliver to your home.

    The Home Medicines Service is available for people in home isolation and for vulnerable patient groups who wish to limit their potential exposure to novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the community. For more information click here.

     

    What if I need to see a dentist?

    As coronavirus restictions are eased and dental practices open up for the full range of dental procedures once again, the Australian Dental Association (ADA) is reminding people to book an appointment with their dentist.

    To find out more, read the ADA’s media release here.

    Accessing support services during COVID-19

    Mental Health Services

    Homelessness Services

    Domestic Violence Services

    Community feedback

    Do you have a ‘good news’ story about your community? If so, the Community Engagement Team at SNHN would love to hear from you. Perhaps a local business is supporting the vulnerable or you know someone who is going ‘above and beyond’ to help others. Email your story and any accompanying photographs to Community@snhn.org.au

    With the exception of essential workers, most people are now working from home. You may also be sharing your home office with partners, housemates or family members who are working or learning remotely.

    For most, this will be a new way of working. Here are some suggestions on how to get the best out of your working day:

    • Maintain a routine much as possible – and make room in it for things you enjoy
    • Ensure each person has their own work station
    • Take a 2-minute stretch break every 30 minutes [app and stretch sheet]
    • Exercise at least once each day, preferably outside in the daylight
    • Eat lunch away from your workstation
    • Speak to at least one person from school, work or university each weekday by telephone or video call

     

    Tips for home schooling

    Educational online games for kids

     

    Activities for children

     

    Community feedback

    Do you have a ‘good news’ story about your community? If so, the Community Engagement Team at SNHN would love to hear from you. Perhaps a local business is supporting the vulnerable or you know someone who is going ‘above and beyond’ to help others. Email your story and any accompanying photographs to Community@snhn.org.au

    What can we do to stay socially connected?

    Social distancing doesn’t have to mean social isolation.

     


    Job Loss

    With many businesses having to close their doors lots of people are facing unemployment. The stress and uncertainty of losing a job can weigh heavily on individual conscience and  on relationships. Consider the following to support friends and family in this situation:

    • Acknowledge the person’s concerns
    • “Suggest looking into the new Australian Government financial supports for those who’ve lost employment resulting from the COVID-19 measures. These include freezing mortgage repayments and changes to Newstart allowance through Centrelink. Find out more here.
    • Encourage them to keep their body and mind active. It is important to find new hobbies and exercise to alleviate stress and anxiety.

    Community feedback

    Do you have a ‘good news’ story about your community? If so, the Community Engagement Team at SNHN would love to hear from you. Perhaps a local business is supporting the vulnerable or you know someone who is going ‘above and beyond’ to help others. Email your story and any accompanying photographs to Community@snhn.org.au

    Breast cancer screening: Following a temporary suspension of services to protect the community, BreastScreen NSW will now gradually resume routine breast screening. Find out more at the BreastScreen NSW website.

    Cervical cancer screening: The Department of Health is monitoring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on health services. It is important for people to keep seeing their healthcare provider for their cervical screening and any follow-up investigations recommended. If you have received a reminder about your screening and have any questions or concerns, please call your doctor or healthcare provider to talk about your circumstances. More information on COVID-19 is available through the Department of Health website or through the COVID-19 hotline on 1800 020 080.

    Bowel cancer screening: During COVID-19, people eligible for bowel cancer screening will still receive invitations, test kits and reminder correspondence about bowel screening in the mail (as long as the mail is being delivered in your area). If you have a test kit at home, you should still do the test. For more details, read the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program COVID-19 FAQs. If you have any questions or concerns, please call your doctor or healthcare provider to talk about your circumstances. More information on COVID-19 is available through the Department of Health website or through the COVID-19 hotline on 1800 020 080.