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Aboriginal communities

Information for Aboriginal people and communities on COVID-19 (coronavirus) to keep you and your community safe.

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Keeping your mob COVID safe

To help protect the community from COVID-19:

  • Anyone with symptoms, even mild symptoms, should get tested. Visit a COVID-19 testing clinic or call your doctor or Aboriginal Medical Service to ask for a test.
  • Stay a safe distance from others where possible - that means 1.5 metres or two big steps.
  • Wear a mask when you can’t distance.
  • If you're unwell, stay at home.
  • Wash your hands often with soapy water or hand sanitiser.

COVID-19 testing

It only takes one person to spread COVID-19 in the community. Get tested, even if you only have one symptom, and self-isolate immediately.

COVID-19 symptoms include fever, coughing, sore or scratchy throat, shortness of breath, runny nose and loss of smell or taste.

You only need one symptom to get tested, and it can be mild. You might think it’s a cold or the flu but it could be COVID-19, and you can’t tell without a test.

Testing is safe – all staff wear protective gear and you will have a safe place to wait.

Testing is free at a public testing clinic. You don’t need a Medicare card. You can find your nearest testing clinic or contact your doctor or Aboriginal medical service.

Watch Dr Kelvin Kong as he talks about physical distancing and getting tested.

 

The best thing you can do to protect community is to keep a safe distance from others. This means two big steps. You should watch out for any symptoms of COVID-19 in yourself and in your family. Even if you feel well, you could be infectiuous and spread the virus to others without knowing. Come forward and get tested, even if you only have mild symptoms. You can help stop the spread of COVID-19 in the community. For the latest information, go to the NSW Government website. 

When to wear a mask

To protect yourself and your mob, you should wear a face mask if you:

  • can’t stay two big steps away from people
  • have symptoms and are going to get tested
  • are in isolation in the same room as another person.

NSW Health strongly recommends people wear a mask when unable to physically distance, particularly on public transport and in other indoor settings, to keep everyone safe. Do not use public transport if you are unwell - stay home and get tested immediately.

Read the Wear a mask: Aboriginal health fact sheet (PDF, 316.96 KB) or watch this video about safely wearing a mask to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

 

Wearing a mask can help stop the spread of COVID-19. You should wear a mask if you can't keep 1.5 meters away from other people. This is how you should wear a mask.
Step 1 - wash your hands before you put on your mask. Washing your hands stops germs from going from your mask and face.
Step 2 - make sure your mask is the right way up and covers your nose, mouth and chin. Do not touch your mask when you are wearing it. 
Step 3 - wash your hands again after putting on your mask. It is a good idea to carry more than one mask when you go out.
Step 4 - try not to touch the front of your mask when you take it off. Put it in the bin straight away. If it is a cloth mask, put it in a plastic bag and wash it before you wear it again.
Step 5 - wash your hands again after taking off your mask. 

Looking after your health and managing stress and anxiety

If you are feeling anxious or stressed, keep a daily routine and stay connected with your family and friends. This can help you stay grounded and keep a positive frame of mind.

Exercise and eating well also helps your wellbeing, especially during uncertain times.

Get tips from health and wellbeing consultant Jeffrey Morgan on how to manage stress and anxiety.

 

 

Feeling stressed and anxious is normal, especially during the coronavirus outbreak. There are things you can do to feel better. Keep a routine to your day. Do things that make you feel happy. Exercise, eat healthy. Remember, this won't last forever. Help is available. Talk to your GP or local medical service, or speak with a trained counsellor anytime by calling 1800 512 348. For the latest information, go to the NSW Government website. 

Keep up with your medical appointments

Keep up with your medical appointments and medications, especially if you have an ongoing health condition.

It's safe to seek help – your hospital and local medical services are taking steps to stop the spread of COVID-19. You're not a burden on the healthcare system, so don't delay your health care.

Watch keeping up with your medical appointments featuring Raylene Gordon.

 

It's more important than ever to keep up with medical appointments and medications, especially if you're over 50 and have an existing health problem. Self-isolating doesn't mean you should stop seeing your doctor, specialist or mental health provider. Speak to your doctor about any worries and keep visiting health services when you need to. Come forward and get tested, even if you have only mild symptoms. You can help stop the spread of COVID-19. For the latest information, go to the NSW Government website. 

Connection to culture for your wellbeing

Staying connected to culture is important for health and wellbeing. When you can’t see the people you love, use time at home to share your culture and stories.

Watch this video with professional dancer Darren Compton as he shares ways to stay connected to culture.

 

Our lives have gone through some big changes since the start of the coronavirus outbreak. We can use this time we are spending at home to share our culture and stories. We can still dance, weave, paint and do lots of things that connect us to culture. Especially at this time, stay connected to your culture for your well-being and to keep our communities healthy. For the latest information, go to the NSW Government website. 

Community Action Plans

Community Action Plans (CAPs) set out actions and responsibilities for organisations and agencies in three stages.

CAPs are developed through the Local Emergency Management Committees in consultation with community members, NSW Health, NSW Aboriginal Affairs, Local Aboriginal Land Councils, and other interested stakeholders and partners.

The plans set out an agreed approach for managing:

  • Level 1: Prepare: COVID-19 has not entered the community
  • Level 2: Confirmed Cases in Community
  • Level 3: Elimination – virus is not contained

Communities

Plans have been prepared for the following communities:

Visitor preferences

Communities have nominated their requirements for visitors. 

Community Action Plan - preference on visits (PDF, 115.23 KB)
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