Restrictions, lockdowns and stay at home orders

Restrictions, lockdowns and stay at home orders will continue to play a part in managing COVID-19. Find out how to stay up to date, what quarantine and isolation mean, and what support is available for declared hotspots.

State and territory restrictions

Restrictions, such as lockdowns, are managed by the states and territories. The situation changes frequently. To stay up to date, check the relevant state or territory information.

You can also use the Health Direct COVID-19 restriction checker to find out what you can and can't do in your state or territory.

Accessing health care and medicines may be different during a COVID-19 outbreak. Find out how to get the health care you need.

Quarantine and isolation

You need to stay up to date with local information about isolation and quarantine. If you have been tested for COVID-19, you must follow the directions from public health authorities and  whoever tested you.

Check with your state or territory for specific information on isolation and quarantine.

Isolation

You need to isolate if:

  • you have COVID-19
  • health authorities suspect you have COVID-19.

This is to prevent the spread of the virus.

You need to stay in isolation until your your public health authority advises that you can leave. If you leave isolation without permission you may face criminal charges or a fine.

Isolation means you:

  • must not leave your home or isolation location, except in an emergency or to get essential medical care
  • must not go into public places including work and shops
  • must not let any other person into your home unless the person
    • lives with you and cannot live somewhere else
    • is providing medical care for you
    • is entering for an emergency.

Quarantine

You will need to go into quarantine if you:

  • test positive for COVID-19
  • have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, or is highly likely to
  • are entering a state or territory with required quarantine period.

Your quarantine may be at home, or at a medihotel. Your local public health authority will direct you where to quarantine and when you can leave.

If you develop symptoms during your quarantine period you will be tested for COVID-19. In some areas you may be tested while in quarantine, even if you don’t have symptoms.

If you test positive you will need to go into isolation. Anyone who has been in your household must go into quarantine. 

Support services

There are a range of support services available to help you through isolation and quarantine.

Support for Commonwealth declared hotspots

The Australian Government Chief Medical Officer (CMO) declares COVID-19 hotspots. This enables the Commonwealth to:

  • provide personal protective equipment (PPE) from the National Medical Stockpile
  • support aged care facilities (PPE, single site workforce supplement, aged care response centres)
  • provide help with contact tracing
  • offer testing to those with no symptoms via GP-led respiratory clinics
  • prioritise vaccine supplies
  • offer the COVID-19 Disaster Payment to eligible workers
  • offer access to 2 telehealth consultation items through the Medicare Benefits Schedule.

The declaration automatically lifts 2 weeks after the relevant state or territory reaches 80% vaccination coverage. 

View a full list of hotspots.

Find out how the Australian Government is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last updated: 
23 December 2021

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