BASS Coast Health has expanded its drive-through testing service at Wonthaggi Hospital as part of Victoria’s campaign to control the COVID-19 pandemic.

A large marquee has been installed in the carpark at the hospital to cater for increased demand, and nurses have been busy, as members of the community heed health authorities’ advice for people to be tested when they display even mild COVID-19 symptoms. People should be tested if they display such symptoms as: fever, chills or sweats, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose, or loss of sense of smell or taste.

Nurses tested 171 people on Thursday, July 23, across Bass Coast Health – the highest number of tests conducted across the organisation in one day during the pandemic.

“We are pleased that members of the Bass Coast and South Gippsland communities who have symptoms are coming to be tested to help us understand the extent of COVID locally,” said Bass Coast Health CEO Jan Child.

“At the same, I would like to remind people that once they are tested, they MUST remain at home until they get their result, and keep their distance from family members.

“Please don’t get tested and then go to work, to the supermarket or to your friend’s home. We have already seen cases where people’s test result comes back positive but they have spread the virus to their work colleagues and family.

“This virus is highly contagious and can be spread by a droplet, or by poor hand hygiene and it is very easily spread throughout our community. It may not kill you, but it may kill someone you are in contact with, or someone you love.

“Getting tested is the responsible thing to do but you must self-isolate before and after and keep your friends, family, workplace and your community safe,” Ms Child said.

Testing is available at:

  • Wonthaggi Medical Centre, Monday to Friday (Ph: 0492 036 568 or go to www.hotdoc.com.au)
  • Phillip Island Health Hub (24 hours a day)
  • Wonthaggi Hospital drive-through facility (9am-5pm, 7 days a week).

People should phone their doctor or the Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398 if their symptoms get worse.

The community is also advised to practise physical distancing by keeping at least 1.5m away from other people – always assume others may have the virus.

If physical distancing is not practical, people should wear face masks and ensure they do so correctly. Learn how at: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/face-masks-victoria-covid-19.