What is it?
As you are aware, there is a novel (new) coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China. More than 40 exported cases (acquired in Wuhan) were reported from outside mainland China. In Taiwan, Macau, Hong Kong, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, France, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Nepal and the USA. A confirmed case in Victoria and in NSW have been recently identified.
Coronavirus is the virus that causes the common cold. This one raised concerns because it did not match any other known virus. One week after it was first detected, it was confirmed that this is a new virus. This is of concern because we have limited knowledge of how it is spread, it’s incubation period, how to treat it and how it will affect people.
Since it is a coronavirus, it will cause upper respiratory (nose, throat) symptoms. That is cough, sore throat, fever, shortness of breath. For people that have a lowered immune system (pregnant, certain medical conditions, the young and the elderly) coronavirus can present as a lower-respiratory tract illness. Some people may present with a severe respiratory infection requiring admission to hospital.
Public Health has advised that there is significant evidence to suggest that the virus can spread from human to human. Much is still unknown about the virus in regards to spread and transmission.
Symptoms to monitor for:
- Respiratory symptoms (shortness of breath, cough, sore throat)
- Severe acute respiratory infection requiring admission to hospital
- Recent travel to Wuhan
- Been exposed to a person with confirmed infection of novel coronavirus.
What to do?
If you are concerned you may have been exposed to novel coronavirus:
- It is important you minimise contact with other people to prevent the spread of the virus. It is important you tell health professionals that you think you have been exposed to novel coronavirus.
- If you need an ambulance, call 000. It is important you tell them you think you may have been exposed to novel coronavirus.
- If you are well enough and do not need an ambulance, please contact the practice by phone. You will speak to one of our Registered Nurses who will triage you.
- We may ask you to stay isolated at home or ask you to come to the practice. If you come to the practice, we will isolate you in a separate room.
- We will contact Public Health who will advise of the best course of action.
- If you do not call the practice by phone and come to practice, it is imporant you let reception know taht you think you have been exposed to npvel coroonavirus