COVID 19 POSITIVE RRC
The following has information on how to monitor and manage your COVID symptoms now that you have tested positive. It also has information on contacts and isolation.
Please note that the following information is up to date as of 24/5/22. It is absolutely the case that recommendations made today will change, and it is important to keep an eye on official sources linked below to make sure they are up to date.
If after reading this, you have concerns about your circumstances or symptoms, please contact your usual GP for the earliest available telehealth appointment. If you are not able to get an appointment with your usual GP, or you do not have a usual GP, you are able to organise a follow up face to face or telehealth appointment with a doctor from Rowville Respiratory Clinic through https://www.hotdoc.com.au/medical-centres/rowville-VIC-3178/rowville-respiratory-clinic/doctors, in the 14 days following your positive test.
I have tested positive – what do I do now?
- Isolate for 7 day from the date your test was performed
While in isolation you must stay at home, except for in the case of an emergency where your safety is at risk. If you attend a hospital, GP or police station in the event of an emergency appointment, you must tell them prior you have COVID-19.
You should stay separated from other people in your house if possible. If you cannot isolate in a separate room you should avoid shared spaces where you can, and wear a mask and clean down any touched surfaces in shared areas. For more information on isolation, please see:
- Notify your contacts
Department of Health is no longer notifying close contacts, so please notify those you have been in contact with since you have developed symptoms, and in the 2 days prior when it is likely you were infectious before you developed symptoms.
CLOSE CONTACTS are those you spent more than four hours indoors in a house or accommodation.
Close contacts no longer need to quarantine and can leave home each day provided they:
- Continually test negative using a rapid antigen test, on at least 5 days out of the 7 day period (ensure tests are spaced at least 24 hours apart).
- wear a mask indoors when outside the home
- do not visit hospitals or care facilities
- notify their employer or education facility
If they can not follow these steps, they must quarantine for the 7-day period – and they are required to get tested on Day 1 and Day 6. They can leave at day 7 with a negative rapid antigen test or PCR performed on day 6, if they remain asymptomatic.
SOCIAL CONTACTS are not people from your home, workplace or school. For further information on close contacts, as well as social and workplace/educational contacts, please visit:
- Symptom management
Keeping up fluids, rest, Panadol/nurofen, sore throat gargles and lozenges can all be helpful for managing COVID symptoms. Consider oral rehydration solutions (like Gastrolyte or Hydrolyte) if you have had diarrhoea/vomiting.
While youre in isolation you cant go to the gym or for a walk around the block, but if you feel well enough, stay active. WHO has COVID specific advice on exercise that can be found at:
- Monitoring your symptoms and escalating care if needed
If you are determined to be low risk (younger than 65, fully vaccinated and no significant underlying medical conditions), it is likely you will be allocated to self manage your illness (monitor your illness at home), or GP management (regular telehealth with your GP).
Tracking your symptoms is important, and can be a helpful tool to see if things are improving, and to help your doctor manage you via telehealth if required.
Particularly, it is important to monitor your breathing. One of the symptoms we watch for is your respiratory rate – monitor how breathless you feel and/or how fast you are breathing (using a timer/watch, you count how many breaths you take every minute). It is helpful if you can, to obtain a pulse oximeter (to measure oxygen levels). If you do not have someone who can go to a pharmacy for you, please call your closest pharmacy as they may be able to deliver them. Please note that measuring oxygen levels via a smart phone is NOT recommended as they are inaccurate.
A helpful diary to monitor your symptoms can be found here
If you have any of the following you should call 000 and attend a hospital:
- Oxygen levels less than 92%, respiratory rate more than 30 breaths per minute, severe shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, or blue lips or face
- Heart rate staying over 120
- Pain or pressure in the chest
- Cold and clammy, or pale and mottled skin
- Fainting or collapse
- Confusion, becoming difficult to wake up
- Little or no urine output, despite drinking lots of fluid
- Coughing up blood
Moderate symptoms that may suggest you need to contact your GP for a review as soon as possible include:
- Oxygen levels 93-94%, or respiratory rate 20-30 breaths per minute, or mild breathlessness/persistent cough
- Temperature above 38 degrees
- Vomiting or diarrhoea
- Struggling to get out of bed, feeling unusually tired or weak
- Daily symptom diary tracking worse rather than stable or better
If your GP is not available you may be able to be reviewed through Rowville Respiratory Clinic, or you can call the national coronavirus hotline for advice on 1800 020 080
- Leaving isolationYou are allowed to leave isolation at day 7 after your positive test if you have no symptoms. If you still have symptoms you may still be infectious – please either stay at home until your symptoms have resolved or discuss with your GP whether it is safe for you to leave isolation without the risk of infecting others.