Mildura coronavirus clinic to open Tuesday

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A DEDICATED COVID-19 assessment and advice clinic will open in Mildura on Tuesday.

The clinic at Sunraysia Community Health Services (SCHS) in Thirteenth Street will operate Monday to Friday from 1-4pm.

SCHS chief executive officer Simone Heald said the clinic would take pressure off the region's hospital emergency department and general practice clinics.

"It is really important the community telephone SCHS first before presenting to the hospital, or calling their local GP," she said.

"The clinic is a co-ordinated response with all the health services and GPs, and the health services want this to be the first port of call. 

"If you require an appointment with us, a GP is available here."

Ms Heald said SCHS would provide updated information and provide guidance and reassurance of the next step they need to take.

"This service will also help to minimise unintentional spread of the virus through our community," she said.

"Our assessment and advice clinic will have a separate entrance to the building (via 13th Street), so we ask people to please not come through our main doors at SCHS. 

"We will make sure the Clinic's entrance will be well signposted."

Ms Heald said people attending the clinic would be asked to wear a protective mask upon arrival, and should not be alarmed if they do not get swabbed for COVID-19.

"At present we have fairly strict guidelines for who is eligible for COVID-19 swab testing," she said.

"The situation is evolving and we will continue to operate based on the advice coming from the Victorian Chief Health Officer and the Department of Health and Human Services."

"We really want people to know that if our clinic doctors consider that COVID-19 testing is appropriate, it will be done. And likewise, if they feel that someone is presenting with symptoms that are more likely to be a regular cough or cold they will provide them with good advice on recovering from that as well."

"The main thing is that all people in Sunraysia who are concerned about possible symptoms come through this clinic from tomorrow"

Symptoms of COVID-19 are fever and/or a dry cough and shortness of breath.

People infected with the virus may experience no symptoms, mild symptoms, or symptoms related to severe viral pneumonia.

Anyone experiencing symptoms as described above should call the SCHS "hotline" to receive advice, and if required, an appointment will be made at the SCHS Assessment and Advice Clinic.

The direct number is 5021 7653. This line will be open from Monday to Friday between the hours of 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm.

For further information visit the Department of Health and Human Services coronavirus page or phone the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.