By Queensland Health Department
In true Queenslander spirit, we’ve been getting questions every day from those in our community who are keen to help out during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The very best things you can do are wash your hands often and properly, keep your distance from people outside your direct household, stay at home when you’re sick and cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow. If you only do these things during this time, that’s enough to save lives.
If you’d like to do more, below is a list of ways you can help out.
Join Queensland’s Care Army
The Care Army is a way you can volunteer to help older people living in the community who may not have friends, family or neighbours to support them. You can register to become part of the Care Army by registering through this online form.
Volunteer for other organisations
Many of the state’s regular volunteers are retirees, which means most of them will fall into age categories that make them at a higher risk of severe symptoms of novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Because of this, some of our usual volunteers can’t, and shouldn’t, meet their regular volunteering commitments.
Now more than ever, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood needs people to donate blood. Every blood donation helps save three lives, and with the current pandemic as well as the approaching influenza season, these products will be more useful than ever.
Look after your community
We’re asking you to stay close to home at the moment, but you don’t have to go far to be of help to others. Helping out in your community could be as simple as dropping a note in an elderly neighbour’s letterbox to ask if they’d like you to pick up their groceries, or sharing old books and toys with a nearby family whose kids are quickly getting bored stuck at home.
Register to work as a healthcare professional
If you’re a healthcare professional, or have experience in health administration or operation, you can register an expression of interest with Queensland Health to work with us during the pandemic response. Head to the Queensland Health website to provide your details.
Spread the right messages
Unfortunately, situations like the current pandemic are an opportunity for some people to spread misinformation and fake news. Whether it’s because they’re scared or because they’re deliberately trying to scare others, we’ve seen individuals and organisations spreading information on social media and to the media that simply isn’t true. This is dangerous and can put the lives of Queenslanders at risk.
We can all do our bit in making sure the truth is getting to our communities. We ask that you listen to and share with others information from trusted sources only. The Queensland Government website, our Queensland Health Facebook page, the Australian Government website, and the World Health Organisation website are great places to start.
Look after yourself
Looking after your own health and wellbeing can help you stay well and out of our healthcare system at a time when it’s operating at increased capacity. We’ve got some simple steps in our blog post for people looking after themselves while self-quarantining, but you can also take the same measures even if you’re not officially in quarantine. We also have a list of ways to stay connected during a time when you’re being asked to stay physically away from your community.