- For the latest information on Coronavirus disease in Victoria, visit the Department of Health and Human Services website: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
- If you are concerned about Coronavirus disease in Victoria, call the Department of Health and Human Services Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398. Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.
- Coronavirus disease can spread after close contact with an infectious person, through droplets from a cough or sneeze, and touching of contaminated services. This is most likely to occur after travel to an affected country, or through living in a house with a person with the infection.
- Victorians should now take steps to prepare for the possibility of transmission of coronavirus disease in Victoria in the coming weeks or months.
- Protect yourself from Coronavirus by washing your hands regularly with soap and water; and try not to touch your face, including your eyes, nose or mouth. One way to become infected is to transfer the virus from a contaminated surface to your face or mouth by touching.
- Practice good respiratory hygiene:
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
- Cough into your elbow.
- Dispose of tissues.
- Wash your hands with soap afterwards.
- Personal hygiene is an important protection against coronavirus disease and all respiratory illnesses – this includes washing hands regularly, especially after using the toilet and before eating.
- Consider slowly stocking up on essential items, just in case you need to self-isolate due to coronavirus.
- For additional information please also visit: https://www.coronavirus.com.au/
Victorians self-isolating due to coronavirus (COVID-19) with no access to food and essential supplies will receive emergency relief packages under a program introduced by the Victorian Government.
The program will support people in mandatory self-isolation, who have little or no food, and no network of family and friends to support them. Each eligible household will receive a two-week supply of essential goods.
Food packages will include items such as long-life milk, pasta, cereal, canned vegetables and sugar. Personal care packages will also be distributed to eligible households and include soap, toothpaste and deodorant. Additional items may also be provided depending on the needs of the household, such as nappies or baby formula.
The packages will be delivered door-to-door, with other distribution points to be established as required. For people who are not eligible for the emergency relief packages, they are encouraged to be self-reliant and call on the help of family and friends wherever possible during the current pandemic.
The emergency relief program for those in mandatory self-isolation will be coordinated by the Red Cross in partnership with Foodbank Victoria and under the direction of the State Relief Coordinator.
It can be accessed by calling Victoria’s dedicated coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398. The hotline can also refer people to other support services if needed.
Businesses across the state can access information on dealing with COVID-19 by calling the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15.
Operators calling the hotline will be able to get information about support services, including those available through Business Victoria, which offers mentoring to help operators develop business continuity and recovery plans.
The hotline will provide the latest information on the response to COVID-19 and how this affects businesses, including how to access financial support available through the national stimulus package. In addition to calling the Business Victoria hotline, business operators can also find information at business.vic.gov.au.
Businesses can also access assistance from the government’s economic survival and jobs package.
Immediate cash and payroll tax relief will be provided for small and medium businesses with wages of $3 million and below. 2019-20 year-to-date payroll will immediately be refunded, providing relief directly to businesses. Payroll from now through to the end of June will be waived, and payroll from July to September will be deferred to 1 January 2021.
As part of the $1.7 billion Economic Survival Package, the Victorian Government has announced a $500 million package to assist people who have lost their jobs at this difficult time.
Under the Working for Victoria Fund, displaced workers will be eligible to apply for different types of work. This presents opportunities for paid work and an opportunity to contribute to Victoria’s ability to manage this event and support the community.
Some displaced workers will have skills that can be readily transferred to new roles. The Government can also assist skills development or help people in obtaining immediate accreditation to commence work.
The Government will work across the public sector, local government, the not-for-profit sector and key private sector employers to facilitate job matching. Businesses that need workers can get in touch at business.vic.gov.au.
Restrictions and closures
Cafés and food
All cafés and food courts must stop providing table service, but may continue to offer delivery and takeaway.
Cafes and canteens may continue to operate at:
- Care homes or schools
- Prisons and military bases
- Workplaces, although only as a takeaway service
Food services for the homeless can continue without restriction.
Retail and commercial premises
The following business activities must stop now:
- Auction houses
- Real estate auctions and open house inspections, except for private inspections by appointment
- Markets, whether indoor or outdoor, unless a food market. If the market has non-food stalls, these non-food stalls must close.
Beauty and personal care services
Hairdressers, barber shops and hair salons may continue to operate, ensuring no more than 1 person for every 4 square metres of space and for a maximum of 30 minutes with each client.
All other personal care services where there is close contact for a prolonged period must cease, including:
- Beauty therapy, spray-tanning, waxing and nail salons
- Tattoo and piercing parlours
- Spas and massage parlours
Allied health services, such as physiotherapy and podiatry are not required to close.
The following entertainment venues where groups of people may come in close contact for extended periods must close:
- cinemas and theatres
- casinos, gaming or gambling venues
- adult entertainment premises such as strip clubs, brothels and sex on premises venues
- concert venues
- arenas, auditoriums and stadiums where performances are held, except where a small group performs to an online audience via live-streaming or similar technology
- amusement parks and arcades
- children’s play centres, both indoor and outdoor.
Community and recreation centres
These venues must close:
- health clubs, fitness centres, yoga, barre and spin facilities
- social sporting-based activities
- swimming pools, both public and shared
- saunas, bathhouses and wellness centres
- community and recreation centres. These facilities may remain open for the purposes of hosting essential voluntary or public services, such as food banks or homeless services.
Boot camps and personal training services can continue only if they are outdoor, and then only up to a maximum of 10 people at any one session, ensuring no more than 1 person for every 4 square metres of space.
The following facilities must close, except where the accommodation is for the purposes of respite, for victims of family violence, other vulnerable groups or for care purposes. This includes:
- caravan and camping parks, except where people live there permanently or as an interim abode where the primary residence is not available.
These venues must close:
- zoos, petting zoos, aquariums and wildlife parks, except for the maintenance, care or rescue of animals
- museums, national institutions and historic sites
- galleries, libraries, toy libraries
- community centres, youth centres and community facilities (such as community halls, clubs, RSLs, PCYCs). These facilities may remain open for the purposes of hosting essential voluntary or public services, such as food banks or homeless services
- local government non-essential facilities and services (such as libraries and pools).
Places of worship
All places of worship must close, except for the conduct of weddings and funerals in accordance with the following guidelines:
- Weddings may be held in places of worship (or other venues), but only with the couple, celebrant and maximum of two witnesses in attendance.
- Funerals may be held in places of worship, funeral parlours or other venues, with a maximum of ten mourners in attendance.
If you have a coronavirus disease question and need a translator:
- First call 131 450
- Then request the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services #Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398
- Keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies