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COVID-19: GP Alert (16 April 2020)

April 16, 2020

Public Health Alert no.11

Please note that as of 15 April 2020, the Chief Health Officer has announced expansion of testing for COVID-19. In addition to the current advice, testing should also be undertaken for Queensland Police Officers presenting with symptoms suggestive of COVID-19. The current complete list of criteria for testing is detailed below.

Queensland recommendations for testing (in addition to the CDNA National Guidelines):

Individuals with fever (≥38°C) or history of fever (e.g. night sweats, chills) OR acute respiratory infection (e.g. cough, shortness of breath, sore throat who:

  • are a Queensland Police Officer
  • work in a school or formal child care setting should be tested. The person being tested should be isolated pending test results.

Click here to view the full Public Health Alert no.11

Assessment and Management of patients in general practice flowchart

The Queensland Health COVID-19 assessment and management of patients in general practice flowchart has been updated (version 1.8) to reflect the latest amendments to testing criteria.

View the flowchart here

Workforce Reminders


Enquiries about the EOI process for medical practitioners who would like to work in Queensland Health to assist with the respond to COVID-19 can be directed to


On 6 April 2020 the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency and the National Boards established a pandemic response sub-register for up to 12 months (less if the pandemic subsides) to assist fast-tracking the return of experienced and qualified health practitioners. Suitable practitioners are automatically added to the sub-registers and can opt-out any time and for any reason.

Click here for more information, including FAQs for practitioners and employers

Clarification about digital prescriptions in Queensland

The Commonwealth arrangement states that a prescriber can send a clear copy of a prescription (a digital image such as a photo or pdf including the barcode where applicable) to a patient’s pharmacy of choice via email, text message or fax.

While the Commonwealth has enabled this arrangement for the purpose of claiming on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, the arrangement can only be given effect in Queensland if changes are made to the Health (Drugs and Poisons) Regulation 1996 (HDPR).

Currently, a valid prescription must be presented in its original form, by fax or by telephone (and in the latter two cases, the original prescription must be posted to the pharmacist within seven days). A digital image of a prescription is not a valid prescription in Queensland.

Queensland Health is exploring regulatory options to enable a digital image of a prescription to be sent in accordance with the Commonwealth arrangement. In the meantime, prescribers are reminded that prescriptions can only be presented to pharmacists in their original form, by fax or by telephone (again, followed by the paper prescription in the latter two cases).

WEBINAR: Digital health tools for COVID 19 and beyond – improving care coordination

DATE: Tuesday, 21 April 2020
TIME: 6:30pm – 8:00pm AEST
Register here for this webinar

This webinar will examine ways in which new and existing digital health technologies can be utilised to improve continuity of care for your patients during times of social distancing and remote consultations. There will be a focus on Electronic Prescribing and the ways in which My Health Record can help support telehealth consults and remote dispensing. It will also include some of the simple things you can do to protect your business from cyber risks which new telehealth platforms might pose.