ALERT: Coronavirus hygiene advice
According to the Federal Department of Health, coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can make humans and animals sick. People with coronavirus may experience fever, flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue, and shortness of breath. Some people recover easily, others may get very sick very quickly.
COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first reported in December 2019 in Wuhan City in China. It is also referred to as 2019-nCoV.
There is evidence that COVID-19 spreads from person to person. Good hygiene is the primary defence against infection. Targeted hygiene practices can go a long way to help keeping you and your family safe.
Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand rub if soap and water are not available.
- Wet hands with clean, running water before applying soap.
- Lather both hands, including the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails.
- Scrub hands for at least 20 seconds before rinsing and drying.
Be especially vigilant with handwashing before and after food preparation, visiting the bathroom, travelling on public transport or visiting public/communal spaces, and before and after caring for someone who is sick.
Practice good cough/sneeze hygiene. Cover your mouth and nose with your flexed elbow or a tissue. Then discard the tissue immediately into a closed bin and clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Avoid close contact with others, such as touching. Maintain at least 1 metre between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
This advice is reflected in messaging from health authorities including the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Federal Department of Health.
At this time, COVID-19 is not widespread in Australia. However, health officials have noted that we need to be prepared for the likelihood that it will become more widespread. Federal Health is monitoring cases and provides regular updates.