Quarantine FAQs

Can I leave quarantine to access medical care?

You can leave quarantine to access arranged medical care when this is supported by your healthcare provider and it cannot safely or feasibly be postponed. You must contact your healthcare provider beforehand and let them know you are in quarantine for COVID-19. Your healthcare provider will determine if your appointment can be deferred and will provide advice on safe travel if the appointment proceeds.

For these purposes, medical care includes:

  • Antenatal appointments
  • Specialist appointments
  • Outpatient clinic appointments
  • Urgent primary care appointments with your doctor that cannot be safely postponed
  • Urgent and emergency transport to hospital.

I’m in quarantine and need to get some groceries/go to the chemist

It is very important that you don’t leave your home while you’re in quarantine. If possible, ask a neighbour, family member or friend to help you. Some supermarkets and greengrocers also provide a home-delivery service for groceries. Tell them to leave supplies on your doorstep and not to come into the house.

If this isn't an option, you should contact the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738 for emergency assistance.

If you urgently need medication, a pharmacist may be able to supply certain medicines without prescription if you don't have access to your valid prescription or are unable to see your usual doctor. Contact your local pharmacy to discuss your needs.

Pharmacists are allowed to issue an emergency supply of certain medicines without prescription to help ensure Tasmanians can continue to access medical care who may not have access to their valid prescriptions or unable to see their GP.

These allowances do not include psychotropic substances, and are in addition to existing emergency medicines supply arrangement from a GP and  pharmacist. The patient must previously have been prescribed this medicine and the pharmacist must be satisfied it is urgently needed.

Can I leave the house (e.g. to walk the dog or for daily exercise)?

If you are in quarantine, no – you need to stay on your property.

If you are not in quarantine then you are still able to leave the property. There is no need to wear a facemask if you are well. It is a requirement to observe the public health advice regarding physical distancing at all times.

What should I do if I become unwell after leaving quarantine?

While COVID-19 is of concern, it is important to remember that most people displaying symptoms such as fever, cough and sore throat are much more likely to be suffering from a cold or other respiratory illness – not COVID-19.

However, as a precaution, if you do develop these symptoms soon after leaving quarantine, see your doctor.

What if I share my home/accommodation with others?

It’s particularly important to protect people who are at higher risk of severe illness. That’s older people (people over the age of 60 years) and people with serious underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, cancer, diabetes and renal failure.

If you live with someone at risk of severe illness, it’s best if they live elsewhere while you are in quarantine. If that’s not feasible, keep as much distance as possible between yourself and them.

If you share your home/accommodation with others:

  • Try to stay away from shared spaces, like the kitchen and lounge room.
  • Wash and dry your hands often and well, with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Cover all coughs and sneezes. If you don’t have a tissue handy, use the inside of your elbow. Put used tissues in the rubbish straight away and wash your hands well.
  • Sleep in a separate bed and use a separate bathroom, if you can.
  • Keep personal items like towels, face washers and toothbrushes separate.
  • Do not share food or drinks.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces (like door handles, sink taps and benches) in shared areas at least daily, using normal household detergent or disinfectant.
  • Wear a facemask if you need to be around other people at home

I live with someone who’s in quarantine. Do I need to quarantine too?

If the person you live with who is in quarantine is well (i.e does not have coronavirus or symptoms of coronavirus), you are not required to quarantine. It’s acceptable to go to undertake essential activities away from the home as normal (e.g. go to work/school, seek medical care or shop for essential supplies).

Though you do not need to quarantine you should practice strict physical distancing at all times. It is important that you adhere to good hygiene measures such as frequent hand washing and avoid contact with the person who is in quarantine at your home.

If the person who you live with gets sick and becomes a confirmed case, then you will need to quarantine for 14 days. If you don’t get sick in that time, you’ll be free to leave quarantine.

Remember, it is important that the person who is in quarantine in your home remains in quarantine for the duration of the 14 day period. You may offer them support, where possible, such as bringing them essential goods or providing them meals so as to minimise the possibility of contact in shared spaces.

I live with someone who’s in quarantine and I’m at risk of severe illness (elderly, or underlying health condition like heart disease or cancer). How can I protect myself?

People can spread the virus to others up to 24 hours before they show signs of being sick, so it’s important to protect yourself. If you have an option of living elsewhere while the person is in quarantine that would be wise.

Otherwise:

  • Try to keep your distance from the person in quarantine. Stay in separate rooms if you can and use separate bathrooms.
  • If you need to share a bathroom, keep toothbrushes and face washers / towels separate.
  • Don’t share drinks or food.
  • Wash your hands after touching crockery or cutlery used by the person in quarantine.
  • Wash your hands often, especially before touching your face and preparing food/drinks or eating.

Can I move between two addresses during the quarantine period?

If you are in quarantine at home, you need to remain in or on your primary residence until your period of quarantine has ended. You should not change your address or leave the State during your quarantine period, unless authorised.

Can I go outside?

If you live in a private house, you can go outside into your garden, balcony or courtyard.

If you live in an apartment or unit, you can go onto your balcony. You can go to the shared garden if you wear a facemask to protect others and move quickly through common areas.

I'm caring for a child in quarantine

Ask your child’s teachers to supply assignments, work sheets and homework by post or email, and if your child can join classes online.

Treat quarantine as an opportunity to do some of those things you never usually have time for, such as board games, craft, drawing and reading.

See here for information on how to talk to your child about COVID-19.

What if my pet needs to see a vet while I am in quarantine?

Where possible, you should arrange for a friend or family member who is not in quarantine to transport your pet.

How do I arrange urgent repairs to my home while I am in quarantine?

If your home needs urgent repairs while you’re in home quarantine, you can arrange that. However, you must take the following steps to protect the tradesperson:

  1. Tell the tradesperson you are in home quarantine because you may have been exposed to coronavirus.
    1. If the tradesperson is at risk of severe illness, they may refer you to an alternate provider.
    2. Remind the tradesperson they must wash and dry their hands (or use alcohol-based hand rub if their hands do not look dirty) before entering and after leaving your home.
  2. Before the tradesperson arrives:
    1. Remove clutter from the area the tradesperson needs to work.
    2. Clean and disinfect all objects and surfaces (eg door handles, benches and sink taps) they may need to touch.
    3. Wash your hands.
  3. When the tradesperson is there, keep away. Everyone in the house should stay in another room or outside in your garden if possible. If you need to stay in the same room, keep as far away as possible. Practice good hygiene – use a tissue (or flexed elbow if a tissue is not readily available) to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, then put the tissue in the rubbish.

Can I access alcohol during quarantine?

Where alcohol providers have an option to order online, and provide contactless delivery, you may continue to receive these orders.

Can I attend a funeral if I am in quarantine?

Applications can be considered for attendance at funerals by people in quarantine.

This would permissible with the following conditions, that:

  • they are well,
  • they wear a mask at all times while out of quarantine,
  • they adhere to physical distancing recommendations and practice hand/respiratory hygiene and
  • they transit directly between their place of quarantine and the funeral and back.

People in quarantine who seek to leave their quarantine requirements to attend a funeral can apply to do so on the Application For Exemption – Compassionate or Medical Grounds form.