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COVID19 Coronavirus

January 21st, 2020

Update 17th Feb 2020

The situation continues to evolve.

Almost all cases of COVID19 are in China so,  unless it is urgent, don’t go to China for the moment – the persons in China have a lot going on, and probably don’t need visitors right now anyway.

There is no risk in Australia. There are no restrictions for Australians travelling to other countries.

The recommendations for travellers are

1 Don’t touch your face while travelling

Virus can potentially live 9 days on surfaces under ideal conditions. If you touch the environment ( lift buttons, doorknobs, telephones, remote controls, benches  etc) and then touch your face you can transfer viruses from then environment to your eyes, nose, and mouth and they go quickly down into your respiratory system where the virus can take hold.

2 Wash your hands frequently with soap and water

Soap and water is the most effective means to remove the virus from your hands. Hand sanitising alcohol-based gel is not as effective for handwashing. Gel is antibacterial rather than antiviral. However, gel is better than nothing.

3 Masks are not helpful

Masks are not helpful for healthy travellers except in very limited circumstances. Doctors wear masks, goggles and hazmat suits if they are serious about avoiding contamination from a patient with any infectious disease.

4 Sick persons – seek medical attention

Sick persons should seek medical attention.

Healthy persons should ideally keep 1-2 metres away from persons who are sick and coughing, but don’t get paranoid. Sometimes this is not possible.  Most coughing is not the coronavirus COVID19.

Also for the record, there is ZERO risk in Chinese restaurants in Australia or being near persons who ‘look chinese’. There is no conspiracy. Lots of very clever scientists around the world are working day and night to get more information. Check out my twitter feed on the front page of our site for interesting and up to the minute news on COVID19 and other travel medicine stories.

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