First steps after your positive COVID-19 result
What steps to take If you receive a text message from SA Health and/or the laboratory telling you that you have tested positive for COVID-19
COVID-19 affects everyone differently. While some people may have no symptoms or mild symptoms, others may become very ill.
Most people with COVID-19 will have mild to moderate symptoms (and some may not have any symptoms), which means they can safely isolate in their own home with appropriate monitoring and care.
It is very important to monitor the symptoms (PDF 157KB) when you or someone you care for tests positive for COVID-19, particularly if you feel that your symptoms are getting worse.
Common symptoms of COVID-19 infection include:
Please contact the COVID-19 Response Care Team on 1800 272 872 if you have any health concerns, especially if you have any chronic health conditions.
When isolating, you should look out for severe or worsening symptoms, particularly:
If you have severe symptoms, you should call Triple Zero (000) straight away and tell the ambulance staff that you have COVID-19.
Majority of people who test positive to COVID-19 will be able to isolate at home.
It is suitable for COVID-19 patients who have no symptoms, or mild to moderate symptoms, to be safely cared for at home. It allows patients to be cared for outside of a hospital, in the comfort of their home.
Find more information about how to isolate if you have tested positive to COVID-19.
While isolating at home, you will be supported by the COVID-19 Response Care Team. The COVID-19 Response Care Team includes doctors, nurses and other health professionals, all specially trained to manage the care of COVID-19 patients.
It provides a 24/7 virtual service (via telephone) and will assist you with monitoring your own health and connecting you with any care you may need, to help you stay well and keep healthy.
You will be sent an initial text message with a link to a short survey to better understand your healthcare needs.
People who are assessed as being at a higher risk of needing medical support will receive a home care kit. If required, this clinical observation kit will be delivered to your home, which contains a thermometer, pulse oximeter (to measure your heart rate), and other items. You will only receive a kit if you are assessed at being a higher risk of needing medical support with COVID-19. Kits are delivered through a courier service and left at the front door.
This will allow the COVID-19 Response Care Team to closely monitor your health (clinical observations) if you are unwell. The COVID-19 Response Care Team will send you a daily SMS to assess your physical and mental health and answer your questions.
If you require urgent support while you are home, call the COVID-19 Response Care Team on 1800 272 872.
If you are feeling very sick or are concerned about your symptoms at any time, please contact your COVID-19 Response Care Team on 1800 272 872.
If you have worsening symptoms such as difficulty breathing or chest pain or have any other medical emergency arise, call 000 (Triple Zero) and ask for an ambulance – tell them you are in isolation because you are COVID-19 positive.
Some people will need to receive short-term treatment or healthcare at a dedicated COVID Care Centre, before being able to go back home to isolate.
A small number of COVID-19 positive cases will receive care in supervised or supported accommodation, such as medi-hotel or regional facility. If you need supervised care you will be notified by the COVID-19 Response Care Team.
There are different factors which will mean you are not able to stay at home, such as your healthcare needs and your household circumstances. If you require supervised care you will be notified by the COVID-19 Response Care team.
If you are unable to make arrangements for your pets or livestock to be looked after by friends or family, the COVID-19 Response Care team will work with you to find alternative arrangements, such as making arrangements with partner organisations such as the RSPCA.
The COVID-19 Response Care team will work with each patient to understand if they can safely drive themselves to their supported care location. People who cannot drive will be provided with SA Ambulance Service transport.
Regional care facilities will be established in some regional communities. Regional COVID-19 patients who need to stay in a metropolitan Hospital in the Hotel will not incur a cost for transport to and from the hotel in metropolitan Adelaide if it is required.
There will be no cost to you for the care you receive for COVID-19, including if you need to:
Most children with COVID-19 will only experience a mild illness or will have no symptoms at all and can safely remain at home without the need for medical support.
For those who need extra care, COVIDKids is a dedicated South Australian service for children and young people with COVID-19, managed by specialist staff at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital. The COVID-19 Response Care Team will assist with referring children to this service.
For more information, visit the Women’s and Children’s Hospital COVIDKids website.
If you are pregnant and COVID-19 positive and need to attend hospital to receive care or to give birth, you will be cared for at the Flinders Medical Centre if you are:
Note: in some situations, COVID-19 pregnant women may also be cared for or have their babies delivered at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital if clinically required.
For more information, visit the COVID-19 maternity care at Flinders Medical Centre website.
If you have an existing health condition that you receive support for, the COVID Response Care Team will discuss this with you and may notify your health care professional of your COVID-19 positive status. Please ensure you notify the COVID Response Care Team of your existing health condition, so that your ongoing health care is integrated into your COVID-19 care whilst you are isolating.
You should not receive a COVID-19 vaccine while unwell with COVID-19 infection, however, you can be vaccinated after you have recovered from your acute illness.