health update

coronavirus (COVID-19)

Find out where to get tested for COVID-19 at cohealth.

For general information about COVID-19 call the Victorian Government’s dedicated hotline on 1800 675 398. You can ask for an interpreter in your language.

Some appointments and health services will stop or change to reduce the risk of transmission. For more information, go to cancellations and appointments.

Coronavirus resources

The resources on this page will help you to:

  • Understand the coronavirus

  • Avoid catching the coronavirus and giving it to others

  • Find information about the coronavirus in your own language

To help you further during the coronavirus crisis, we’ve also provided hotline numbers of organisations that can support you with:

  • family violence
  • mental health and wellbeing
  • housing
  • financial support
  • free meals and food parcels
  • alcohol and other drugs support
  • health
  • refugee and asylum seeker support
  • justice and advocacy
  • disability

Last updated: 15 April 2020, 12:00pm

Coronavirus in easy English

easy English – what you need to know about Coronavirus

Coronavirus in your language

Information about the Coronavirus in your language

Find information about the Coronavirus in your language at:

In addition to these, cohealth’s team of bi-cultural workers have been busy creating videos in their community languages, to share important and reliable information where there is a gap. These videos help our diverse communities stay safe during the pandemic. Go to cohealth’s coronavirus YouTube playlist access videos in:

  • Arabic
  • Falam Chin
  • Hakka Chin
  • Karen
  • Tibetan

how to wash your hands

  • Remove any jewellery
  • Wet hands with running water
  • Apply soap
  • Rub hands together for at least 20 seconds
  • Wash all areas, including in between fingers
  • Rinse hands and turn off tap
  • Dry hands thoroughly with a paper towel
    Hand washing tipsInfographics courtesy of healthdirect

how to avoid infection

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Cover your mouth or nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Use only disposable tissues, and dispose of them immediately after use
  • Avoid close contact with anyone showing respiratory symptoms
  • Stay at home when you are sickavoiding coronavirus
    Infographic courtesy of healthdirect

Do you need a translator?

  1. call 131 450 
  2. request the coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398 

Hotline numbers and organisations that may assist during the coronavirus crisis:

family violence

Safe Steps

1800 015 188
Safe Steps supports women and children experiencing family violence.
24 hours 7 days

Sexual Assault Crisis Line

1800 806 292
The Sexual Assault Crisis Line provides after hours counselling, information and support.
5 pm to 9 pm daily

1800 Respect

1800 737 732
1800 Respect provides information, counselling and support for family violence or sexual assault.
24 hours 7 days


1800 542 847
WithRespect provides support for LGBTIQA+ people experiencing difficulty in their relationships, including family violence. Available daily as well as an after hours service.
Wednesday: 5 pm to 11 pm, Saturday and Sunday: 3 pm to 10 pm

Child protection – after hours

131 278
Protecting children and young people whose safety is at risk.
5 pm to 9 am Monday to Friday, 24 hrs on weekends
During business hours Monday to Friday, see local Child Protection services.

National Domestic Violence Hotline

1800 799 7233
The National Domestic Violence Hotline assists anyone needing support regarding family violence.
24 hours 7 days

mental health and wellbeing

Beyond Blue

1300 224 636
Beyond Blue provides information and support to help everyone in Australia achieve their best possible mental health
Phone support 24 hours 7 days


131 114
Lifeline provides crisis support and suicide prevention service.
24 hours 7 days


1800 187 263
SANE provides information about mental illness, treatments and where to go for support.
Monday to Friday, 10 am to 10 pm

North West Mental Health Triage

1300 874 243
North West Mental Health Triage provides a phone-based assessment and support service.
24 hours 7 days

Suicide Call Back Service

1300 659 467
Suicide Call Back Service provides phone, video and online counselling.
24 hours 7 days

housing and homelessness

Opening Doors

1800 825 955
Opening Doors is a hotline for people who are experiencing homelessness or worried that they might be soon.
You’ll be directed to the service closest to you, or outside business hours, your call will be directed to Salvation Army Crisis Services.
24 hours 7 days

Frontyard Youth Services

1800 800 531
Frontyard Youth Services provides crisis response for people aged 12 to 24 who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness.

Council to Homeless Persons

1800 066 256
Council to Homeless Persons provides advocacy for people who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness.


9685 7553
MediStays assists people needing housing due to quarantine.

financial support

National Debt Helpline

1800 007 007
National Debt Helpline provides a free financial counselling service.
Monday to Friday, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm


131 272
Centrelink provides social security payments and services.

Already receiving Centrelink payments?
You will be paid two lumps sums: $750 economic support payment; $550 coronvirus supplement.

Applying for a Centrelink payment?

    1. Go to myGov
    2. Apply for a Centrelink customer reference number
    3. Register your intention to claim a Centrelink payment

Lost your job or have been made redundant?
You can apply for Jobseeker (double the existing Jobseeker Centrelink payment).

Have your work hours been cut?
Your employer can apply for the wage subsidy and you’ll get the Jobkeeper payment (if you’ve been employed for longer than 12 months).

The Australian Government financial support webpage explains how to access government financial help during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Electricity, gas and water

Origin 13 24 61
If you or someone in your home uses a life support machine, register the details with Origin as soon as possible at Origin Energy Life Support.
To talk to an interpreter for any Origin enquiry, call 1300 137 427.
AGL  13 12 45
AGL has a hardship payment option.

If you have trouble getting assistance from your energy retailer, contact the Energy and Water Ombudsman on 1800 500 509.


133 095
Request financial assistance if you are behind in repayments.
132 032
Contact if you’re experiencing hardship. If you’ve lost your job or experienced income loss, you maybe eligible for a 3 month deferral of loan repayments.
Offering 6 month loan holidays to mortgage customers. For hardship assistance, call Customer Care on 1800 701 599.
Offering 6 month loan holidays to mortgage customers and a lowered standard variable rate.
For hardship assistance, call 1800 252 845.


13 22 00
No late fees or disconnections until the end of April.
Eligible pensioners with a Telstra home phone plan will be able to make unlimited local, national and 1300 calls (and mobile calls).

For hardship assistance, call 1300 308 839.
Customers can put their plan on hold for free. Late payment fees will be waived until 30th April. Disconnections are on hold until 30th April.

For hardship assistance, call 1300 650 405.
Unlimited standard national calls to all Vodafone postpaid customers and active prepaid customers until the end of April.

Aussie Broadband
For hardship assistance, call 1800 062 058.
Ceasing all suspensions due to late payments. Providing unmetered data usage from 6am to 6pm for all customers on NBN and ADSL plans.

Rent Relief

Dear Landlord
Self-help tools created by Justice Connect’s Homeless Law Service to assist people who are falling behind on rent.
Phone Justice Connect: 8636 4408 | 1800 606 313 (free from landlines).

No Interest Loans

NILS provide individuals and families on low incomes with access to safe, fair and affordable credit.
13 64 57

free meals and food parcels

Red Cross

1800 675 398
Anyone in mandatory self-isolation and no network to support them.
2 week supply of essential goods, delivered to door.
24 hours 7 days

St Vincent De Paul

1800 305 330
Anyone who needs food assistance
Monday to Friday, 10 am to 3 pm

Low cost supermarket support

Woolworths 1800 904 698
For people with no access to the internet, can’t leave the house, and who need immediate help.
$80 pre-packed food box (covers 1 person for 2 weeks).

City Care Storehouse 9318 4477
30% discount for centrelink and immigration card holders
79 Sunshine Road, West Footscray
Tuesday to Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm

More food and meal assistance

See our Free food services page for information about free food, food parcels and vouchers available from organisations within the central, Northern and Western areas of Melbourne.

alcohol and other drugs support


1800 888 236
Directline provides telephone counselling, and an information and referral service.
24 hours 7 days

Family Drug Helpline

1300 660 068

health services


1800 022 222
Healthdirect is an Australian government-funded service, providing free, approved health information and advice.
24 hours 7 days

COVID-19 hotline

1800 675 398
The Department of Healh and Human Services  (Victoria) provides a hotline for people who are concerned they may be at risk of COVID-19.
24 hours 7 days

Department of Health hotline

1800 020 080
The Australian Government Department of Health provides free hotline for people seeking information about COVID-19.
24 hours 7 days

refugee and asylum seeker support

Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

9326 6066
The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre can support people seeking asylum who live in or around Melbourne, Victoria and who are in the process of, or waiting to apply for a protection visa in Australia.
Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm

justice and advocacy

justice connect

8636 4408
1800 606 313 (free from landlines)
justice connect has created resources designed to help people with common legal problems related to COVID-19.


Disability Information Helpline

1800 643 787
The Disability Information Helpline is an Australian Government resource providing information and referrals for people with disability and their supporters about coronavirus (COVID-19).

Background branding image of roads representing community