CAPACITY at intensive care units across the region's public hospitals will be doubled in preparation for a spike in coronavirus cases.
In NSW the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases has jumped to 134, with the national count now at 279.
Two elderly women have died from the virus taking the national toll to five.
A Western NSW Local Health District spokeswoman said with three confirmed coronavirus cases in the region they expect to see an increase in respiratory presentations to emergency departments.
"All NSW Health facilities are planning for a potential increase in presentations of people with respiratory illness over the coming weeks and months," she said.
"NSW Health is working with health facilities and clinicians to maximise available critical care resources."
The spokeswoman said a key activity was to manage a potential increase in attendances of patients with respiratory tract infections (such as COVID-19 and seasonal influenza) while maintaining services.
"This also includes monitoring intensive care bed availability, staffing and availability of critical infrastructure, such as ventilators," she said.
"The risk of contracting COVID-19 in the community from casual contact remains low."
The spokeswoman said Western NSW LHD had well established plans for handling respiratory infections, including COVID-19 and influenza.
"These plans are reviewed regularly and updated to reflect the latest advice and research," she said.
"Staff are trained in world's best practice for infection control and prevention which helps to keep our patients, visitors and staff safe."
Coronavirus clinics in Western NSW Local Health District
There are three COVID-19 clinics operating in the region and they are located in Bathurst, Dubbo and Orange.
- Bathurst Hospital's clinic operates 9am to 4.30pm
- Orange Hospital's clinic 8am to 4pm
- Dubbo Hospital's 10am to 6pm
These clinics are for people who have:
- Travelled overseas in the last 14 days AND also have symptoms similar to a cold or flu
- Had close contact with a loved-one or other person who has a confirmed diagnosis of COVID
Tip to keep you and others safe
- Keep your hands clean by washing them often with soap and water or using hand sanitiser
- Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose as the virus can enter your body if it's on your hands and you rub your eyes or touch your nose or mouth.
- Maintain social distance when you can, 1.5 metres between you and others is good
- If you think a surface may be infected, clean it with simple disinfectant to kill the virus and protect yourself and others.
- Sneeze and cough into your elbow rather than your hand
- Use disposable tissues
- Keep your distance from those who are coughing and sneezing
- Stay home if you are unwell and call, not visit, your own GP or call Healthdirect on 1800 022 222 for advice.
A one-stop website for information about COVID-19 for the community and health professionals is available here.
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