We will be fighting the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic for at least another six months according to the Australian Department of Health.
The number of coronavirus cases in Australia is now under control and continues to go down. However, it’s not over yet and we are in this for the long haul.
The measures the Australian Government has implemented have reduced infections and are saving lives. So the government wants to help you stay up to date with the latest information.
The positive and cooperative way communities are following social distancing requirements has helped reduce the number of new cases. Coronavirus spreads from person to person, usually by sneeze, cough or touch. By staying at least 1.5m from other people we give the virus nowhere to go – each one of us is helping stop the spread.
If we stop social distancing too soon, we will get new outbreaks. Infection rates are falling, but they haven’t stopped. Only leaving the house for essential activities, such as food shopping, medical care, exercise or work and education, protects you and others.
Our faith and religious beliefs are even more important at this time – but coronavirus means we’ve had to change the way we observe them. For now we need to practise our faith at home, on our own or with family who live with us.
All religious services are now via streaming or broadcasting online, with strict social distancing in place for the people delivering the service. Bans remain for people attending services.
Advice and support
You don’t have to leave your home to see a doctor, psychologist, or midwife. You can receive advice over the phone or online. Telehealth is covered by Medicare. Contact your health care professional about this service. You can also arrange to get medication delivered to your home by your pharmacist.
The restrictions are making some people more stressed, uncertain and exposed to the potential for domestic violence. Family and domestic violence shelters are essential services and remain open. If you are experiencing domestic violence, contact 1800RESPECT, MensLine on 1300 78 99 78 or Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800.
International students, tourists and working holiday visa holders
Australia has welcomed international students, tourists, and working holiday visa holders. Many have chosen to return to their home countries in recent months. As the coronavirus pandemic continues, visitor visa holders and international students who cannot support themselves should consider returning home so they can access the support available in their home countries.
Visa holders and backpackers can help in the coronavirus crisis in industries like health, aged and disability care, agriculture, and food processing.
The Government has lifted restrictions on international nursing students so they’re able to work more hours and extended hours for international students working at supermarkets.
As the spread of the coronavirus continues, it is important to stay informed through official sources. Stay up to date via australia.gov.au, call the National Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 020 080 or the translating and interpreting service on 131 450.
There is also a free Australian Government app – search for ‘Coronavirus Australia’ on the Apple store or Google Play.
The government has also released an app called CovidSafe. This app, which can be downloaded on the Apple store or Google Play, aims to speed up contacting people exposed to coronavirus (COVID-19).
Get more stories like this in your inbox!
Sign up for our newsletter and receive regular updates.