AMBULANCE Victoria has given a simple message to Campaspe residents – stay at home and save lives.
Ambulance Victoria Loddon Mallee regional director Michael Georgiou said a huge difference can be made by social issolating.
“Stay at home and avoid all unnecessary travel,” Mr Georgiou said.
“If you must leave the house, make sure you are 1.5 metres, or two arms’ length away from others at all times.
“The evidence globally from countries ahead of us in the coronavirus pandemic is clear: the only weapon that will slow the rate of infection and ensure our public health system can cope, is social distancing.”
Residents are being reminded to frequently and thoroughly wash their hands, cough and sneeze into their elbow, and not to touch their face.
"Washing your hands thoroughly for twenty seconds and keeping a safe distance from others when out in public might be a little hard to get used to, but they are important measures we can all take,” he said.
"These changes will be temporary, but right now, they're essential. We should expect no less of each other.”
Mr Georgiou said people needed to talk about COVID-19 to make sure everyone fully grasped the seriousness of the situation, particularly with children.
“Parents should use words and language that are appropriate for their age and most importantly, reassure children that we’re doing everything we can to keep them happy and healthy,” he said.
“Children also need to understand there are things they can do themselves to minimise the impact of the pandemic, such as washing their hands carefully and regularly.”
With the health system was equipping itself to deal with the crisis, Mr Georgiou said locals should try to take the strain off those working, and not panic when paramedics take extra care.
“Only ringing triple zero (000) when it’s an emergency will also mean that ambulances are available for those who really need it,” he said.
“You may see paramedics wearing white suits or gowns, and gloves, masks and goggles. This is a precautionary measure and does not mean the patient has COVID-19,” he said.
“This is our standard procedure for all infectious diseases, and it means our paramedics are doing the right thing and ensuring the community and our people remain safe.”
Victorian Ambulance Union Secretary Danny Hill said the best way to show thanks to paramedics was to stay home.
“Paramedics are out on the road saving lives every day,” he said.
“Now all Victorians have the chance to be a lifesaver by sitting down at home and putting their feet up.”
Anyone who thinks they have COVID-19 should contact the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398. Anyone else with a health concern should call Nurse on Call on 1300 60 60 24. If in doubt, visit the DHHS coronavirus website.