Self-isolation guide

March 3rd, 2020

What does self-isolation mean?

Self-isolation means avoiding closed crowded spaces. This means all situations where you may come in contact with others, such as social gatherings, work, school, child care/pre-school centres, university,
faith-based gatherings, aged care and healthcare facilities, prisons, sports gatherings, supermarkets, restaurants, shopping malls, public transport or travel and all public gatherings.

Maintain a distance of at least 1 metre from any other individuals.
You should avoid having visitors to your home, but it is okay for friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food.

Where possible, contact a friend or family member to take your children to school (if they are not also required to self-isolate).

Avoid sharing household items.

You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, pillows or other items with other people in your home. After using these items, you should wash them thoroughly with soap and water, place in the dishwasher for cleaning, or wash in your washing machine.

Cover your coughs and sneezes

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or you can cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
  • Throw used tissues in a lined trash can, and immediately perform hand hygiene; either wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds making sure you dry them thoroughly or use a hand sanitiser.
  • To contain respiratory secretions a mask should be worn as much as possible if it can be tolerated. If a mask cannot be tolerated, you should apply the above respiratory hygiene.

Wash your hands

  • Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • You can use a hand sanitiser if soap and water are not available and if your hands are not visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Improve air flow

Improve airflow in the living space by opening windows and doors as much as possible.

Relatives of caregivers to individuals with suspected coronavirus

  • Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • You can use a hand sanitiser if soap and water are not available and if your hands are not visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Maintain a distance of at least 1 metre from any other individuals.
  • Wear a medical mask when in the same room with the infected individual.
  • Throw used tissues in a lined trash can, and immediately perform hand hygiene; either wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds making sure you dry them thoroughly or use a hand sanitiser.
  • Improve airflow in the living space by opening windows and doors as much as possible.

Taking care of your wellbeing

Your emotional and mental health is important. It is normal to feel stressed or lonely when self-isolating, but there are some things you can do to feel better.

Reach out to your usual supports, like family and friends, and talk about how you feel. We also recommend sticking to a routine such as having regular mealtimes, bedtimes and exercising.

If you feel you are not coping, it is important to talk with a health professional. For support with grief, anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 – free, anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – to talk with a trained counsellor.

If you become unwell, contact Healthline

Contact Healthline for free on 0800 358 5453, or your GP if you begin to feel unwell. The symptoms of COVID-19 are cough, fever, and shortness of breath.

For all non-health related questions, call 0800 Government (0800 779 997).

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