How to protect yourself and others from coronavirus (COVID-19)

There are important steps you should take to help reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and protect yourself and those who are most at risk.

How to slow the spread

To help slow the spread of COVID-19, practise good hygiene and physical distancing and follow the rules for public gatherings, quarantine and isolation.

  • Good hygiene
    Good hygiene includes washing your hands, covering your coughs and cleaning your home or workplace.
  • Physical distancing
    Find out how to practise physical distancing in public, at home, at work, and in schools.
  • Public gatherings
    Understand the limits that apply to essential gatherings and non-essential gatherings.
  • Isolation
    Read about what isolation is, steps you should take while in isolation, and what to do if you live with someone in isolation.
  • Quarantine
    Read about what quarantine is, who must go into quarantine, and what to do if you live with someone in quarantine.

Surgical masks

The routine use of face masks in the community is currently not recommended, while the rate of community transmission of COVID-19 is low.

If you have COVID-19, wearing a surgical mask can help to prevent spreading it to others if you need to leave isolation to seek medical attention.

However, some people may choose to wear a mask in situations where they cannot keep physical distance. This includes on public transport and/or if they are at higher risk of severe illness if infected (for example, because of their age or a chronic medical condition).  A face mask does not replace the need for other precautions to prevent spread of COVID-19. You should still stay at home if you are unwell.

Find out more:


There is no vaccine for COVID-19, but there is one for the flu.

You should get a flu shot. Getting the flu and COVID-19 at the same time can make you very ill.

Scientists from around the world are working on developing a vaccine for COVID-19. The World Health Organization believes this may be available within 18 months.

Care for your health

If you are unwell and think it might be COVID-19, see how to seek medical attention.

If you are unwell with a different medical problem, see how to access health services and get your medicines during COVID-19 restrictions.

If you have a chronic medical condition, keep your usual medical or pathology test appointments. Contact your doctor or specialist to talk about any concerns you have.

You may be able to arrange a telehealth appointment with them.

Read more about the ongoing support available during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Beyond Blue Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service

Beyond Blue are providing information, advice and strategies to help you manage your wellbeing and mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.


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Last updated: 
9 July 2020

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