COVID-19 and outbreak in Victoria

10 July 2020

Community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 virus continues to increase in Victoria, presenting a high risk of reintroduction of COVID-19 disease into South Australia. A hard border closure with Victoria came into effect overnight on 8th July.

South Australian residents returning to the state from anywhere in Victoria are required to undergo 14 days of quarantine (either at home or in a quarantine hotel as approved by SA Police) and will be provided with pathology forms at the border and asked to have a COVID-19 test completed on day 1 and day 12 after entering the state.

Most non-South Australians coming from Victoria, other than a small number of essential workers, will not be permitted to enter the state.

While SA has managed well, we need everyone to keep doing the great work that got us here. We are not ‘COVID-free’. The situation in Melbourne has shown how easy it is for the disease to spread.

Doctors are the most trusted people to talk to their patients about the importance of COVID-19 testing. A recent population survey in South Australia revealed that while only 26% of people with symptoms of COVID-19 present to a healthcare provider, of those who did see a doctor, just over half were tested.

We encourage doctors to test everyone who presents with symptoms of COVID-19, even if mild, as high levels of testing are essential for early detection and containment of cases.

Please test anyone presenting to your practice who has been in Victoria from 23 June onwards, whether symptomatic or not.

Please also test all patients with:

  • Acute respiratory infection (e.g. cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose) OR
  • Fever OR history of fever or chills in the absence of an alternative diagnosis that explains the clinical presentation OR
  • Acute unexplained loss of smell or altered sense of taste OR
  • New onset of other clinical symptoms compatible with COVID-19 (headache, myalgia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea) who are close contacts of a confirmed case of COVID-19; or who have returned from overseas or interstate in the past 14 days.

If you are unable to carry out testing in your clinic, a list of testing centres is available at Covid-19 clinics and testing centres.

Further information

See the Australian Government Department for Health for further information and regularly visit the SA Health Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) page for SA updates.