Advice for frontline workers
Anyone who works in health, aged or residential care who has taken the recommended infection control precautions, including the use of recommended personal protective equipment (PPE), while caring for a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19), is not considered to be a close contact.
However, they are advised to self-monitor and if they develop symptoms consistent with coronavirus (COVID-19), they should self-isolate and notify the department on 1300 651 160 so they can be tested and managed as a suspected case of coronavirus (COVID-19).
When do healthcare workers have to self-quarantine?
Consistent with public health advice, you are required to self-quarantine for 14 days if you have come into close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19). If you have been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19) you are required to self-quarantine for a minimum 14 day period.
Healthcare workers who have returned from overseas will be placed in mandatory quarantine for 14 days.
Hospital workers must not enter or remain at a hospital in Victoria if:
- The person has been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19), and has not yet met the criteria for discharge from isolation.
- The person has travelled/arrived in Australia from any country in the past 14 days.
- They have had known contact with a person who is a confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) case without using recommended infection control precautions, including use of recommended PPE.
Remember, if you have taken the recommended infection control precautions while caring for a suspected or confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19), including use of recommended PPE you are not considered to be a close contact and do not need to self-quarantine.
Emergency accommodation for healthcare workers
The Hotel for Heroes program, otherwise known as the coronavirus (COVID-19) Emergency Accommodation (CEA) program, has been extended to provide emergency accommodation for frontline workers who are required to self-quarantine or self-isolate, should they be unable to do so in their home.
Eligible frontline workers include:
- Public and private hospital clinical or non-clinical healthcare workers
- Paramedics and patient transport officers
- Frontline workers in hospital laboratories
- Victoria Police workforce
- Youth Justice workforce
- Metropolitan Fire Brigade officers
- Country Fire Authority Emergency Medical Response officers
- Corrections workforce
- Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation workforce
- Workers in supported accommodation for people with a disability
- Public sector residential aged care workforce
- Community based pharmacy workforce
- Workers in primary care settings
The CEA program will also be available to a small number of essential frontline hospital and paramedic workers who regularly operate in an environment that involves consistent exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) positive patients, who need accommodation on compassionate grounds or those who cannot safely self-isolate at home - for up to a three-month period during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
- Frequently Asked Questions Emergency Accommodation for frontline workers - 6 May 2020 (Word)
- Information for staff Emergency Accommodation for frontline workers - 6 May 2020 (Word)
Coronavirus (COVID-19) health workforce response
The Working for Victoria health portal is now closed to further expressions of interest. For further information please visit coronavirus (COVID-19) health worker response.