Community urged to be COVID-smart during winter school holidays

GPs are calling for common sense these school holidays.

 The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) is urging Central Coast families to help stop the spread of COVID-19 these school holiday by following expert medical advice and acting responsibly.

Schools on the Coast start their winter holidays from July 3 and with the recent rise in new cases across Victoria, the RACGP is calling for families to make sensible decisions around travelling and get togethers during the holidays.

RACGP Central Coast Spokesperson and Wamberal GP, Dr Joachim Sturmberg, said all Australians need to do their part to stop the spread of COVID-19. “These are not normal school holidays. “Although we have successfully flattened the COVID-19 curve in Australia and have seen an easing of restrictions, we are far from out of the woods.

“The spike in cases in Victoria was not unexpected and could happen in other areas, particularly as people gain more freedoms. “This is why it is so important that families are extra vigilant this school holidays and maintain social distancing and regular hand washing.

“Anyone who is feeling unwell with COVID-19 symptoms such as cough and fever should get tested right away and selfisolate until you get the results. “And if you do test positive for COVID-19, you and any other members of your household must self-isolate – that means staying home and avoiding social gatherings of any type,” he added.

Dr Sturmberg also reminded Coasties to take care of themselves and to see their GP for any additional health concerns. “We know many people have avoided seeing their GP during this pandemic due to fear of contracting COVID-19 or thinking their GP was not open. “I want to reassure everyone that GPs are open and safe to visit.

“Central Coast GPs are fully aware of COVID and are on top of best practice so if you are in doubt, call your GP and let them guide you,” Dr Sturmberg said. He added that all GPs had adopted telehealth initiatives to make getting in touch even easier and to avoid the potential spread of disease between patients at practices.

“We have a lot of elderly people here on the Coast who should be extra vigilant but so long as everyone is following physical distancing, avoiding large gatherings, keeping up with their hygiene and just generally being responsible the Coast should stay on its current path,” he said.

Source: Interview, Jun 30 Dr Joachim Sturmberg, RACGP

Reporter: Dilon Luke