COVID-19: Testing, Treatments & Managing COVID-19 @ Home

UPDATED: 25/05/2022

Click here for the latest clinic news about COVID-19 and our COVIDSafe plan on our website.

Key points:

  • Be specific about the urgency of the care you need.
  • Always call 000 in an emergency and request an ambulance.
  • If you have mild or no symptoms you do not need to call your GP.
  • Call your GP or Nurse On-Call (1300 606 024) if your symptoms worsen.
  • Book an urgent Telehealth appointment with your GP if you think you are eligible to access oral treatments for COVID-19.

Oral treatments for COVID-19:

COVID-19 oral anti-viral treatments are now available.

Treatment should be commenced within 5-days of symptom onset.

If you test positive for COVID-19 book an urgent Telehealth appointment with your GP to discuss your eligibility and treatment options.

These medications are for the treatment in the early phase of COVID-19 infection for people with eligible chronic health and high-risk factor conditions for developing severe disease.

PBS eligibility criteria apply:

  • People >75 years old with one high-risk factor for developing severe disease, or
  • People >65 years old with two high-risk factors for developing severe disease, or
  • People >18 years old with immunocompromising conditions irrespective of vaccination status, or
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people >50 years old with two high-risk factors for developing severe disease.

Fact sheets:

  • Click here for a Department of Health fact sheet on what to expect when you have COVID-19. 
  • Fact sheets are also available in more than 60 languages for COVID positive people isolating at home.

Who should get a rapid antigen test (RAT)?

  • Get a RAT as your first option if you have symptoms or are a COVID-19 contact.
  • If you have symptoms or are a contact but your can’t access a RAT, you can get a standard PCR test.
  • If you can’t access either test at the moment, isolate at home until you can.

When should you get a standard PCR test?

  • If you have symptoms or are a COVID-19 contact and you can’t access a RAT, you can get a PCR test.
  • If you don’t have symptoms and you’re not a COVID-19 contact, but test positive on a RAT, the recommendation is to get a PCR test to confirm the result. This is not recommended if you have symptoms or you are a COVID-19 contact.

Where can a RAT be obtained?

  • RATs can be purchased from supermarkets, pharmacies or online from selected suppliers.
  • Eligible Commonwealth concession card holders can access free rapid antigen tests through the concessional access program.

Report a positive RAT result:

If you test positive using a RAT you are officially a COVID-19 case.

You must self report your result to the Department of Health online via this link or by calling 1300 651 160 (or the Coronavirus Hotline at 1800 675 398).

  • Only self-report if you test positive from a RAT.
  • You don’t need to report your result if you tested positive from a PCR test.
  • You must isolate for 7 days from the date you got your positive RAT or PCR test result.
  • Don’t get another test if you have already tested positive. You don’t need it. You are automatically released after 7 days of isolation.

COVID-19 Contacts:

There are different types of COVID-19 contacts and different rules apply.  Make sure you follow the right advice for your situation.

Click here for more information.

Managing COVID-19 @ Home:

Most people recover well from COVID-19. However, if you’ve had a positive COVID-19 test and you’re isolating at home, it’s important to protect those around you and monitor your symptoms.

GP Respiratory Clinics:

GP respiratory clinics are open across Victoria. If you have COVID-19 symptoms please visit a nearby Respiratory Clinic.

COVID-19 Vaccines:

Our COVID-19 vaccination clinic is currently closed. Refer to the Department of Health for alternative locations.

Vaccination after COVID-19 infection:

Click here to learn about COVID-19 vaccination after a COVID-19 infection, when you need to get one and who it’s recommended for.

Face Masks:

Click here for information about face masks.

As a condition of entry those >8 years old must still wear a face mask at our medical centre.

What to do if you think you have COVID-19:

If you think you have COVID-19 or you have had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 first make a Telehealth appointment with one of our GPs to find out how to get tested.

COVID-19 testing is recommended if you feel unwell with the following symptoms:

  • fever, chills or sweats
  • cough, sore throat, shortness of breath or runny nose
  • loss or change in sense of smell or taste

If you have any of the symptoms, however mild, STAY HOME and seek advice from your GP by a Telehealth phone consultation first to find out how to get tested

What if I am a patient at Victoria Harbour Medical Centre?:

Victoria Harbour Medical Centre is committed to ensuring the health and safety of all patients and staff.  We are here to help and have temporarily changed our service model to better manage your healthcare needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Whether you are worried about symptoms of COVID-19 or any other type of health problem, our GPs are still on hand to help.  We encourage you to continue consulting your regular GP for any health matter.

Safe in-person face-to-face consultations or Telehealth appointments are available.  You can make an appointment with us online or by calling the medical centre on (03) 9629 1414.  Screening questions will be asked when you book or attend an appointment.  You will always be informed of your options when you make an appointment.

We remain open for your health needs but as conditions of entry, all patients and visitors must:

  • wear a face mask (those > 8 years old)
  • perform hand hygiene upon entry/exit
  • observe all patient alert signage and posted placards
  • answer pre-entry screening questions truthfully and to the best of your knowledge

If you need urgent medical care always call emergency 000 (triple zero).

If you are seeking information on COVID-19 call the Coronavirus Hotline:

Both hotlines operate 24/7 and will connect you to a registered nurse if needed.

For digital resources and daily health alerts about COVID-19 refer to:

Click here for the Department of Health COVID-19 Home Safety Plan – this guide will help keep you, your family and friends safe and well.

For translating or interpreting call 131 450 first and tell them your language.  Click here for translated resources.  SBS Radio is also broadcasting COVID-19 news and information in your language.