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COVID-Ready: People at risk of serious illness

COVID-19 is now circulating widely in Queensland.

It’s likely that most Queenslanders will either get COVID-19, or be directly exposed to someone who has COVID-19.

Now is the time to get COVID-Ready.

Some people in our community are at a higher risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 because of a number of pre-existing health issues. If you are at a higher risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19, the best chance of protecting yourself and others is to get vaccinated, if your health condition allows you to do so.

Download our COVID Care Plan (PDF, 1,001 KB) to make sure you have plans in case you or someone in your household gets COVID-19. Print off our Get COVID-Ready checklist (PDF, 497 KB) to make sure you know what kinds of things you need to do to be prepared.

Get vaccinated

It’s not too late to vaccinate. Anyone over the age of 5 is eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Book your vaccination.

If you're already vaccinated and over the age of 18, you may be able to get a booster shot. Book your booster.

Find more information on the COVID-19 booster dose and why it is so important.

People at high risk of serious illness from COVID-19

People who are at high risk of serious illness include those who:

  • are unvaccinated
  • are over 70
  • have had transplants
  • are currently having treatment for cancer (chemotherapy or radiotherapy)
  • are living with chronic illness or immune suppressive diseases
  • have had a form of blood cancer in the past 5 years, such as leukaemia, or lymphoma.

The risk of serious illness can increase if you’re living with multiple health conditions and are diagnosed with COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself is to get vaccinated. To discuss your health options, visit your health care worker or doctor.

People at moderate risk of serious illness from COVID-19

People who are at moderate risk of serious illness include those who:

  • live in residential aged care
  • live with a disability
  • are pregnant
  • live in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
  • suffer from chronic illnesses and diseases including heart disease
  • have diabetes, high or low blood pressure or severe obesity
  • suffer from neurological conditions such as stroke or dementia
  • have had a form of cancer in the past 12 months (non-blood).

The risk of serious illness can increase if you’re living with multiple health conditions and are diagnosed with COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself is to get vaccinated. To discuss your health options, visit your health care worker or doctor.

If you are pregnant

If you are pregnant there is a greater risk you could become seriously ill if you get COVID-19, and it is more likely you will require hospital care.

This risk increases if you are pregnant and are:

  • older than 35
  • overweight or obese
  • have pre-existing conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes (type 1 or 2).

To reduce the risk to you and your baby, it’s important to get vaccinated.

If you have any concerns or need to know more, talk to your health care worker or doctor.

While the risk to your unborn baby is relatively low if you get COVID-19 while pregnant, there have been some instances where babies have been born prematurely and have needed hospital care. The best way to protect yourself and your baby is to get vaccinated.

Find out more about getting COVID ready for families (including pregnancy).

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander remote communities

If you are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person who lives in a rural or remote community, you have an increased risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19. Find out more about the reasons behind the increased risk and ways to access help if you are part of a remote community.

People with a disability

Some people who live with a disability may only experience mild symptoms while some will be at greater risk of getting seriously ill. This may be because:

  • you have pre-existing health conditions such as a respiratory condition, a compromised immune system, heart disease or diabetes
  • you cannot socially distance from others because you need assistance and support
  • you may not be able to wear a face mask
  • you are living in supported accommodation or group residential settings
  • you might not be able to isolate safely from others
  • you live a long way from a hospital
  • you are aged 70 and over.

Even if you have mild symptoms you might be admitted to a hospital so you can get the care you need.

Access Auslan and video resources.

Find out more about getting COVID ready if you live with a disability.

Aged care residents

Some people who live residential aged care may only experience mild symptoms while some will be at greater risk of getting seriously ill. This may be because:

  • you have pre-existing health conditions such as a respiratory condition, a compromised immune system, heart disease or diabetes
  • you may not be able to wear a face mask
  • you are living in supported accommodation or group residential settings and cannot socially distance from others
  • you live a long way from a hospital
  • you are aged 70 years and over.

Even if you have mild symptoms you will be admitted to a hospital once you test positive so you can get the care you need, and keep the rest of your facility safe.

Find out more about getting COVID ready if you live in aged care.

Resources

Get COVID-Ready kit

COVID-19 is now circulating widely in Queensland, so it’s a good time to prepare your Get COVID-Ready kit (PDF, 1,000 KB) .

If you get COVID-19 and need to isolate, it may be too late to get the essentials in order. Be prepared and do what you can now.

Your kit should include:

  • a thermometer
  • pain relief
  • your regular medications
  • a plan for who can look after your children, pets, or people in your care only if you have to go to hospital
  • face masks, hand sanitiser and gloves
  • a plan for how you’ll get food and essentials for two weeks such as frozen meals, long life milk, and supplies and food for your pets. If possible, arrange a friend or family member who doesn’t live with you to shop for you and leave it at your door
  • phone numbers for people you can call if you need help
  • stay-at-home activities to keep you entertained
  • a COVID Care Plan in case you get COVID-19. You can give it to your health worker or doctor if you need to go to hospital.

Print out a copy (PDF, 497 KB) to put on  your fridge.

Get COVID-Ready kit

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COVID care plan

The COVID Care Plan includes important information about you, your health and people in your household. You can share it with:

  • your doctor
  • other health workers
  • hospital staff
  • a friend or family member.

If you live in residential aged care or accommodation for people with a disability, you won’t need to complete a COVID Care Plan. Your carers already have the right information on hand.

Resources