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COVID-19 can be serious and require hospitalisation but most cases are mild and can be safely managed at home.

This page contains important information about how to look after yourself while you have COVID-19 and what to do if your condition changes.

Translated Resources

Information is also available in other languages below:
Ambulance Victoria recognises the importance of providing accessible information to the community and we continue to look at ways of how we can best achieve this. We will continue to assess the languages chosen for translation as we publish future community messages.

When to Monitor Your Symptoms

If you have mild symptoms such as:

  • Dry cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Aches and pains

You should closely monitor your symptoms and manage them by:

  1. Getting enough rest
  2. Staying active (staying within the house and/or garden)
  3. Eating well
  4. Drinking plenty of water
  5. Taking any medicines discussed with your GP (or other health provider)

Contact your COVID Positive Care Pathways Program or Doctor


If you develop any new moderate symptoms, such as:

  • Mild shortness of breath when moving around or coughing
  • Coughing up mucous regularly
  • Temperature above 38 Celsius
  • Severe muscle aches and pains
  • Feeling very weak and tired
  • Shakes and shivers
  • Vomiting and diarrhoea
  • Little or no urination

Or if you feel that:

  • Your symptoms are getting worse instead of staying the same or getting better
  • Something is wrong and you are concerned you are getting much worse
  • You are unable to take care of yourself and others are unable to take care of you (things like washing, putting on clothes, going to the toilet or making food)

You should be assessed by a healthcare professional:

  1. Follow the plan given to you by the COVID Positive Care Pathways Program if you have one
  2. If you do not have a plan, contact the COVID Positive Care Pathways Program in your area for help as soon as possible
  3. If you are not enrolled in a COVID Positive Care Pathways Program, contact your doctor
  4. If you are not contacted and assessed by your COVID Positive Care Pathways Program or doctor within two hours, go to your local emergency department
  5. If you cannot go to your local emergency department, contact Triple Zero (000)

Call Triple Zero (000)

If you develop any severe symptoms, such as:

  • Severe shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Your breathing gets worse suddenly
  • Coughing up blood
  • Lips or face turning blue
  • Skin cold and clammy, or pale and mottled
  • Pain or pressure in your chest
  • Fainting or often feeling like you will faint
  • Become agitated, confused, or very drowsy
  • A rash that does not fade if you roll a clear glass over it

You should call Triple Zero (000) immediately, tell them your symptoms and let them know you have COVID-19.

Depending on your condition, an ambulance may be sent, or a paramedic or nurse may speak to you over the phone to help you get the best care for your situation.

What to do Now

Get tested


If you haven’t had a COVID test since developing your current symptoms, then you will need to be tested immediately.

You can find your nearest COVID testing location here.

The COVID test is free for everyone. This includes people without a Medicare card, such as visitors from overseas, migrant workers and asylum seekers.


Isolate at home


If you have received a positive COVID-19 test result, you must follow the public health directions and stay at home, unless you need to seek medical attention.

Your doctor or the clinic where you were tested will contact you by phone or SMS to deliver your results.

If you need to leave home to seek medical attention, you must wear a mask, wash your hands regularly and notify your healthcare professional that you are COVID positive before and after arriving.

Taking Care of Yourself

It is important to take care of your mental and physical health while you have COVID-19.

Click here for more information or speak to the COVID Positive Care Pathways Program, your GP or other healthcare professional.  

If this raises personal issues for your or you feel you are not coping help is also available from:

  • Lifeline Australia   13 11 14
    A crisis service that provides support at any time
  • Beyond Blue   1300 22 4636
    Provides specialist help for people in isolation
  • Kids Helpline   1800 55 1800
    A free and confidential counselling service for young people

Ambulance Victoria is a critical link in Victoria’s healthcare system. We welcome your comments as they assist us to improve our services. If you wish to provide feedback, please contact Patient Experience and Consumer Participation Department either via patientexperience@ambulance.vic.gov.au or call 1800 875 137.

*Calls from mobile phones may be charged at a higher rate