While there is relief, excitement, and nervousness around restrictions for COVID-19 easing, it is important to remember a few things to keep ourselves and our communities well. The virus is still present in Australia and cases are expected to rise at some stage.  

People will experience the virus with varying severity depending on a number of factors. We are now asking anyone with respiratory symptoms like a sore or scratchy throat, fever, cough, or a runny nose to phone health services and be tested for COVID-19. There are still lots of other cough and cold illnesses that will still need treatment of their symptoms with rest, paracetamol and ibuprofen for fever, chicken soup for the soul, keeping up your fluids and strict hand hygiene. If you experience shortness of breath, chest pain, and respiratory distress, it is important to seek further medical advice and treatment. 

The virus, like all respiratory viruses will spread between people. Social distancing of 1.5m, avoiding larger gatherings, and strict hand hygiene are all important. The cultural change of staying home when sick, and also increased hygiene in public spaces is also important and will continue to slow the spread. 

We can all play our part in protecting our community and continue to follow the recommendations of public health experts and clinicians.