Everyday precautions

Practising good hygiene is the first step in preventing the spread of disease.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and running water, for at least 20 seconds. Dry them with paper towel or a hand dryer. Alternatively use alcohol based hand sanitisers.
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow.

Physical distancing

Pysical (or social) distancing means avoiding close contact and crowded places wherever possible.

Physical distancing in public means people should:

  • Maintain a minimum physical distance of 1.5 metres, and when you're in an enclosed space have no more than one person per 4-square metres.
  • stay at home and only go out if it is absolutely essential
  • avoid physical greetings such as handshaking, hugs and kisses
  • pay using tap-and-go instead of cash
  • travel at quiet times and avoid crowds
  • avoid public gatherings and at-risk groups like older people

Symptoms of COVID-19

Monitor for symptoms such as:

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • unexplained loss of smell or altered sense of taste.

Other early symptoms to watch for are:

  • chills and body aches or muscle pain
  • a sore throat
  • headaches
  • runny nose
  • diarrhoea.

If you develop symptoms

If you are unwell or develop symptoms, stay at home and isolate.

  • Do not go to public places or attend work, schools, or universities.
  • Do not visit healthcare facilities. Call ahead to seek advice.
  • Do not visit aged care facilities.
  • Seek out the seasonal flu vaccination or call your GP or health care provider.

If you have recently returned from overseas or interstate, or been in direct contact with a person who has COVID-19 and you suspect you have COVID-19, contact a COVID-19 clinic or testing centre for further information.

Help protect other people's health

  • If you are unwell in any way, avoid visiting loved ones, friends and family in hospitals and aged care facilities.
  • Observe restrictions on visits to aged care facilities. Visit only for a short duration and abide by the limit of a maximum of one visit per resident per day, which may include a maximum of two people, except for palliative care.

More information

Stop the flu before it stops you - SA Health

Page last updated: 26 June 2020