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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Hinchinbrook Shire Council Updates

For the latest updates and announcements, visit the Queensland Government COVID-19 website.

General Information

What is a coronavirus and COVID-19?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses known to cause respiratory infections. These can range from the common cold to more serious diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). This new coronavirus originated in Hubei Province, China and the disease is named COVID-19.

COVID-19 can and has spread quickly and widely. It has resulted in the deaths of over 4.3 million people worldwide and over 940 deaths in Australia.

How can we help prevent the spread of coronavirus?

Practicing good hand and sneeze/cough hygiene, staying home when you are sick and getting vaccinated are the best defences. You should:

  • Stay at home if you are sick;
  • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter how mild, get tested;
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or hand sanitiser;
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your arm or a tissue, dispose of tissues in the bin and wash your hands;
  • Wear a mask when you are unable to keep 1.5 metres from other people or whenever mandatory face masks are required; and
  • Get vaccinated.

The Australian and Queensland Governments are working together to secure and rollout COVID-19 vaccines across the state. The vaccine is free for all Australians. When enough people in the community are vaccinated, it slows down the spread of disease. Achieving herd immunity is a long-term goal and usually requires a large amount of the population to be vaccinated.

More information:

What is social distancing?

Social distancing is one way to help slow the spread of viruses such as COVID-19. Social distancing includes staying at home when you are unwell, avoiding large public gatherings if they’re not essential, keeping a distance of 1.5 metres between you and other people whenever possible and minimising physical contact especially with people at higher risk of developing serious symptoms, such as older people and people with existing health conditions.

Unless there are restrictions in place, there is no need to change your daily routine. However, it is important to take these social distancing and hygiene precautions to help protect the people in our community who are most at risk.

Who is most at risk of a serious illness?

Some people who are infected may not get sick at all, some will get mild symptoms from which they will recover easily, and others may become very ill, very quickly. Those at greatest are:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and people in remote communities;
  • Older people;
  • People with certain medical conditions;
  • People in aged care facilities; and
  • People with disability.
What do I do if I develop symptoms?

If you have any infectious or respiratory symptoms (such as sore throat, headache, fever, shortness of breath, muscle aches, cough or runny nose), stay home.

You should telephone the health clinic or hospital before you arrive and tell them you have symptoms, advise your travel history or that you may have been in contact with a potential case of coronavirus. You must remain isolated either in your home, hotel or a health care setting until public health authorities inform you it is safe for you to return to your usual activities.

Who needs to self-isolate or quarantine?

Queensland's Chief Health Officer will determine who needs to self-isolate or quarantine, depending on COVID-19 cases, clusters, hotspots and spread.

What does self-isolate or quarantine mean?

If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, you must self-isolate (stay at home) to prevent it spreading to other people, until you have been cleared to return to your usual activities by a medical professional.

You might also be asked to quarantine (stay at home) if there is a chance you have been exposed to the virus.

Staying at home means you:

  • Do not leave your home unless it is to get essential medical care, to avoid injury or illness, or to escape a risk of harm;
  • Ask someone to get food and other necessities for you and leave them at your front door; and
  • Do not let visitors in — only people who usually live with you or people providing emergency or medical care should be in your home.

You do not need to wear a mask in your home. If you need to go out to seek medical attention, wear a mask to protect others, and call your provider before attending.

Queensland's Chief Health Officer through Queensland Health will provide directions for self-isolating or home quarantine, including the period and testing requirements. Please check the Queensland Government COVID-19 website for current details.

How is the virus treated?

There is no specific treatment for coronaviruses. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Most of the symptoms can be treated with supportive medical care.

Should I wear a face mask?

There is no specific treatment for coronaviruses. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Most of the symptoms can be treated with supportive medical care.

More information

You can also contact the dedicated Queensland Health COVID-19 hotline on 13 42 68 (13 COVID).  

If you have concerns about your health, speak to your doctor.


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