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COVID-19 Advice and Resources

To keep up to date with the latest news and developments our facebook page: @ChildlineGauteng

  1. Basic Information
  2. Myths and Facts
  3. List of places across the country you can visit to get tested
  4. Video explaining Covid-19
  5. Sources of credible information
  6. Additional resources


What is COVID-19?


It’s a new virus that can give you:

  • A fever
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue

It can result in mild or severe symptoms, and in some cases it can be fatal. More than 80% of infected people do get better.

How does COVID-19 spread? It spreads when the tiny drops in the air that comes out when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or the mucous from when they blow their nose or spit, get into a healthy person’s eyes, nose or mouth.

These droplets can land:

  • On the infected person’s hands, clothes
  • On another person
  • On all kinds of surfaces (phones, desks, computer keyboards, furniture, anything that person is near)
  • Or they can float in the air

This means that the virus can move from one person to another through the air, and through touching of hands or different surfaces.

COVID-19 can be transmitted from an infected person even if they do not have symptoms. This can happen as soon as 24 hours after becoming infected.

The virus is highly contagious – without precautions being taken, it is likely that each infected person will infect 2 – 3 other people.

How long does it take for a person to get sick from the virus? It can take anywhere between 4 and 14 days from the time a person is infected, to the time that they start to feel sick.
What are the best ways to prevent infection? Wash your hands (including under your nails), wrists and forearms regularly, with soap and water and for 20seconds

  • Before you eat
  • After you go to the toilet
  • After any contact with people
  • After using public transport
  • When you come home
  • Throughout the day

NB: Do not run the tap while you are washing your hands:

  • Wet your hands and apply soap
  • Turn off the tap and lather for 20seconds
  • Make sure you wash all fingers, top and bottom of hands, wrists and forearms, and under nails
  • Turn on the tap and rinse

You don’t have to use drinking water to wash your hands, you can use water that has been used to wash clothes or dishwater if you don’t have access to enough clean drinking water

Sanitise surfaces:

  • Regularly sanitise your phone, keyboard and any tools you use that might be used by others, as well as your house/car/office keys
  • Sanitise kitchen and bathroom surfaces, as well as hand-rails, tables, lift buttons, toilet seats, toilet flushers
  • Sanitise the trolley or hand basket at the supermarket

Cough etiquette:

  • Cover your face with a tissue when you cough or sneeze
  • Throw the tissue away immediately
  • If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow
  • Stand 2 meters away from other people when you cough or sneeze, or when they cough or sneeze
What are the best ways to prevent infection?  Don’t:

  • Touch your face
  • Bite your finger nails
  • Lick your fingers
  • Shake hands
  • Share tools
  • Share phones, keyboards, pens, etc
  • Share food, bowls, cups, or towels

Avoid groups of people and crowds where possible:

  • If you are able to, work from home
  • Try to have meetings via telephone or online platforms (eg. Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp video)
  • Avoid stokvel meetings, church gatherings, book clubs, parties, restaurants, bars and clubs, sports gatherings, etc.
  • REMEMBER: The Government has declared a State of Disaster, and gatherings of more than 100 people are prohibited.

If you are elderly, or have a pre-existing health condition (eg. cancer, TB, HIV, lung disease, heart disease)

Eat healthy and get enough rest to keep your immune system strong

Who should wear a mask?
  • People who care for individuals who are confirmed to have COVID-19 should wear a mask
  • A mother breastfeeding a baby if she is confirmed to have COVID-19 should wear a mask
  • A person under investigation who is coughing should wear a mask to protect others
  • Healthcare workers caring for ill persons confirmed to have COVID-19 should wear a mask
What to do if you feel sick? If you feel sick with:

  • A sore throat
  • A fever
  • A cough
  • A runny nose
  • And you suspect that you might have been in contact with someone infected with COVID-19

Call 0800029999 or Call your doctor. Do NOT go to the doctor or clinic without calling first.

When phoning your GP, bring any relevant information to their attention including your recent travel history, contact with persons who had recently travelled to countries with COVID-19 outbreaks, personal contact with a person with confirmed COVID-19, or symptoms associated with COVID-19 that you are experiencing. The doctor may ask specific questions to assess you, advise whether you need to be tested for COVID-19, and give you a referral to a pathology laboratory for testing to be done.

Your doctor may examine you and take a swab from inside your nose and mouth, which will be sent to the laboratory for COVID-19 testing. You should receive the results within 48 to 72 hours, and you should self-quarantine at home until the results are known.

If you have a mild cough or other symptoms:

  • Make an appointment to visit your clinic or doctor like normal.
  • Then stay home and rest until you are better to reduce the spread of germs.
  • NB: “Coming to a hospital if you suspect that you have COVID-19, places the hospital community or others at unnecessary risk. What is important is that you practise social distancing and self-quarantine at home so you don’t spread the infection to others.”
What if I test positive for COVID-19?
  • Follow your doctor’s orders, take medicine as prescribed
  • Stay at home
  • Wear a mask to protect your family
  • Ensure all the prevention methods are practiced
  • Ensure you and your family have a plan in place:
  • If at all possible, you should stay in a separate room, and use a separate toilet.
  • Do not let children and family into that room, except for the person looking after you. That person MUST ensure that they wash their hands, and limit physical contact with you.
  • If you are unable to perform certain tasks (cooking, child care, home maintenance, shopping, etc), who will do them?
How is COVID-19 treated?
  • There is no specific antiviral treatment available for COVID-19.
  • Treatment is via supportive care, and will depend on your symptoms, for example high fever, pain and for any other illnesses that may develop as a result of the infection.
  • Antibiotics are not an effective treatment as they only work on bacterial infections, and COVID-19 is a VIRUS.
  • Antibiotics will only be prescribed if a bacterial infection occurs as a result of the COVID-19 infection.
  • Paracetamol is being recommended for fever and pain (not anti-inflammatories), however follow your doctor’s advice, especially if you have a pre-existing or chronic medical condition.
  • Should the symptoms worsen, you may need to be treated in hospital.
Why should I practice “social distancing”?
  • Social distancing is a proven method of limiting or slowing down the rate of infection.
  • Limiting the number of infections limits the number of people likely to get severe symptoms.
  • This means that the health care systems will be less under pressure, and will more likely be able to manage the severe cases, along with other patients in need of care.
  •  The more we can slow down the spread of the virus, the less overall harm will be done to our economy, service delivery, etc.

We all have the duty to act responsibly to reduce the spread of germs every day, but especially in times of crisis.

What other information do I need to know?

Myths vs. Facts


Did you know?

  • Anyone can get the virus, it does NOT matter where you are from, what you look like, your nationality, culture or religion.
  • Most people who get sick from the virus get better. The elderly and people with pre-existing health problems that are very vulnerable, BUT it is NOT TRUE that healthy younger adults don’t get seriously ill.
  • This means we must all act responsibly – you do not want to cause someone to become critically ill or even die.
  • Mosquitos do not spread the virus
  • Masks should be worn by those who are sick (because it limits how far the tiny droplets released when the person sneezes or coughs can travel), and by health care workers. Most masks don’t block the tiny droplets that are in the air. You need to wash your hands and follow the above guidelines.

Did you know?

  • Garlic
  • Boiling water baths
  • Chlorine
  • Antibiotics
  • Hand dryers
  • Snow and cold weather

DO NOT HELP STOP THE VIRUS. In fact using these things can make you sicker.

Did you know?

  • You cannot self-test by holding your breath for 10 seconds
  • You cannot prevent infection by drinking lots of water
  • You cannot prevent infection by gargling with salt and warm water

Did you know?

  • You can get the virus from someone who has it but is not showing any symptoms
  • Not everyone who gets the virus has the all of the same symptoms


Link to CNN interview: Dr. Robert Legare Atmar, an infectious disease specialist at Baylor College of Medicine.

Myth: Drinking water will protect you from the coronavirus


CLAIM: “If you don’t drink enough water more regularly, the virus can enter your windpipe and into lungs.”

Whoever penned the post also wrote that people should drink water “every 15 minutes at least” to wash the virus down through the throat and into the stomach, where the acid will supposedly kill the virus.

REALITY: There is no evidence from any other respiratory viruses that proves this approach works.

“Even if it worked at all, which it doesn’t, people still breathe in from their nose, not just their mouths,” Dr. Atmar told CNN. “This would still only protect the mouth and not the nose.”

Myth: Gurgling water and salt will prevent the coronavirus


CLAIM: “A simple solution of salt in warm water will suffice.”  Along with gurgling a water and salt solution, the post also suggested drinking warm water can kill the virus.

REALITY: Based on data from other respiratory viruses, saltwater “would not be expected to work,” Atmar said.

By recommending people to drink warm water, the post implies the temperature of the water inactivates the virus, which Atmar said is entirely incorrect.

Myth: If you can hold your breath for 10 seconds, you’re OK CLAIM: “Take a deep breath and hold your breath for more than 10 seconds. If you complete it successfully without coughing, without discomfort, stiffness or tightness, it proves there is no fibrosis in the lungs, basically indicates no infection.”

REALITY: Atmar said this is simply “not correct.”  “When someone has an acute viral infection it can be difficult to take a deep breath and not cough because the airways are irritated. That’s all it means. It doesn’t say anything about fibrosis, even though people with fibrosis might struggle doing it. Being able to hold your breath for 10 seconds also doesn’t mean someone doesn’t have coronavirus.”

Myth: If you have a runny nose, it’s just a cold


CLAIM: “If you have a runny nose and sputum, you have a common cold. Coronavirus pneumonia is a dry cough with no runny nose.”

REALITY: This isn’t completely true, Atmar said. A runny nose can be a symptom of the flu, allergies and other illnesses.  And while many patients of the coronavirus do have a dry cough, those with coronavirus pneumonia also have had or could have a productive, or “wet,” cough which produces phlegm (sputum), according to Atmar.

Myth: If you have the coronavirus, you’ll get pneumonia


CLAIM: “The virus then blends into a nasal fluid that enters the trachea and then the lungs, causing pneumonia.” The post also said the virus first infects the throat, which would give patients a sore throat for three to four days before blending into a nasal fluid.

REALITY: This is also not entirely accurate. The time sequence for coronavirus symptoms vary from patient to patient, and not all patients will have a sore throat, Atmar said.  Not everyone with a sore throat has coronavirus, either, and not all coronavirus patients will develop pneumonia.

Myth: Coronavirus patients will experience a drowning sensation


CLAIM: “The nasal congestion is not like the normal kind. You feel like you’re drowning.

REALITY: This isn’t true.  “That does not sound like any other respiratory virus people are infected with and many patients with coronavirus have not had nasal infection at all,” Atmar told CNN.

Myth: By the time a person with coronavirus is hospitalized, their lungs will have experienced fibrosis


CLAIM: “By the time they have fever and/or cough and go to the hospital, the lung is usually 50% fibrosis and it’s too late.”  Fibrosis is the irreversible scarring of the lung which can lead to respiratory failure.

REALITY: This is totally incorrect.  “This information is extremely alarmist,” Atmar said. “Fibrosis only develops in the minority of patients and 80 percent of coronavirus patients experience only the mild symptoms of the disease, so this is incorrect.”

The incubation period for coronavirus, Atmar said, is two to 14 days. Symptoms usually begin with five to six days of exposure, with the first week including a cough, sore throat, fever, and muscle aches. Only the minority of patients will experience the second week of severe respiratory symptoms and may be at risk of fibrosis.


While the coronavirus is an issue everyone in the world should be taking seriously, the spread of false information can be both dangerous and deadly.

If you aren’t sure if something you are reading about the coronavirus is correct, the best thing to do to is to check with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or your local health department — not social media.







  • Alberton IPS, 68 Voortrekker, Rd, New Redruth, Alberton, 1449
  • Netcare, Room 206 Mulbarton Medical Centre, 27 True N Rd, (Hospital), JHB, 2190
  • 46 Rhodes Ave, Vereeniging, 1939
  • Lenmed in hospital, Lenasia South
  • Daxina Medical Centre
  • Krugersdorp Lab, Outpatient Depot, 1 Boshoff Street, Krugersdorp, 1739
  • Birchleigh depot, 7 Leo Street
  • Kempton square shopping centre, shop 61
  • Leicester depot, suite no 8 Leicester Medical Mews, 7 Leicester Road, Bedfordview Germiston
  • Houghton Hotel Depot, 53 2nd Ave, Houghton Estate, Johannesburg, 2198, South Africa
  • 62 Orchard Rd, Cheltondale, Johannesburg, 2192, South Africa
  • Lancet Corner, Corner Stanley and Menton Rd, Richmond Auckland Park
  • Rosebank Lab, 3rd Floor, 8 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank
  • 173 Rivonia Road, Morningside, Sandton, South Africa Rochester Place Office Block A
  • 8 Parks Street, Bedfordview, Germiston
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, Steve Biko Hospital, Tembisa Hospital
Free State and Northern Cape


  • G07, Mediclinic Bloemfontein, Kellner St, Westdene, Bloemfontein, 9301
  •  112 Mac Dougall St, El Toro Park, Kimberley, 8301
  • RH Matjhabeng, Power Road, Reitzpark, Welkom
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: Northern Cape: Kimberly Hospital & Free State: Pelonomi Hospital


  • 44A Grobler street, Polokwane Central
  • 71 Wolksberg Road, Ivory Tusk Lodge, Tzaneen
  • Corner Mpehephu & Mvusuludzo near Cash build, Thouyandou
  • Clinix Private Hospital, No 86 Grosvenor Street, Phalaborwa
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: Limpopo: Polokwane Hospital
North West


  • 1 Kok Street, Rustenburg, North West
  • Cachet Park Depot, Shop 24 Cnr Steve Biko & Meyer Street, Potchefstroom, 2531
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: North West: Klerksdorp Hospital
Western Cape


  • 2 Heide Street, Bloemhof, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Brackenfell Medical Centre, Cnr Brackenfell & Old Paarl Road , Cape Town, South Africa
  • Cnr Longmarket & Parliament Street, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Smartsurv House, Century City, Cape Town, 7441
  • 15 Paul Kruger Street, Durbanville, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Shop 9 De Kuilen Shopping Centre Carinus Street
  • 7c Solway Street, Bellville West A, Cape Town, South Africa
  • 91 Jan Smuts Dr, Pinelands, Cape Town, 7405, South Africa
  • Rondebosch Medical Center, 95 Klipfontein Rd, Rondebosch, Cape Town, 7700, South Africa
  • 1st Floor, Room 4 Harbour Bay Medical Centre
  • Trumali House, Trumali Street, Harringtons Place, Stellenbosch, South Africa
  • Arun Place Block 6 Unit F, Cherrywood Gardens, Sir Lowry’s Pass, South Africa
  • Stellenbosch Oewerpark Suite 12A Rokewood Road, Die Boord, Stellenbosch, South Africa
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: Western Cape: Tygerberg Hospital
Kwa-Zulu Natal


  • Lenmed La Verna Private Hospital 1 Convent Rd, Ladysmith, 3370
  • Mediclinic Newcastle Private Hospital 78 Bird St, Newcastle Central, Newcastle, 2940
  • Life Empangeni Garden Clinic 50 Biyela St, Empangeni Central, Empangeni, 3880
  • Busamed Gateway private Hospital, 36-38 Aurora Dr, Umhlanga Rocks, Umhlanga, 4319
  • Berea 1st Floor, Mayet Medical Centre, 482 Randles Rd, Sydenham, Berea, 4091
  • Ahmed Al-Khadi Private Hospital 490 Jan Smuts Hwy, Mayville, Durban, 4058
  • Life Chatsmed Private Hospital Suite 121- 201 West Wing Chatsmed Garden Hospital, 80 Woodhurst Dr, Chatsworth, 4092
  • JMH Isipingo private hospital Suite 2 Grnd flr Medical Towers Isipingo Hospital, 162 Phila Ndwandwe Rd, Isipingo Rail, Isipingo, 4133
  • 28 Bazley St, Port Shepstone, 4240
  • Suite 205 Midlands Medical Centre, 162-166 Masukwana St, Pietermaritzburg, 3201
  • Hilton Gardens, Hilton, 3245
  • Life Mt Edgecombe Private Hospital Ste 1 Phoenix Medical Ctr, Redberry Rd, Rockford, Phoenix, 4068
  • Life Entabeni Private Hospital Suite 8 Level 3 West Wing Entabeni Hospital, 148 Mazisi Kunene Rd, Berea, 4001
  • The following hospitals have been identified as centres of isolation and treatment of people infected with coronavirus: KwaZulu Natal: Grace Hospital
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD):

  • The NICD website is an excellent source of up to date information.
  • Hotline: 0800-029-999.
Join the WhatsApp support for South Africans.

  • Save the number in your contacts list: 0600 123 456
  • Type “Hi” and you will be sent a menu and instructions
  • This works quite well for basic information, and is easy to use.
The Department of Health Website:

The DOH website has links to download posters, pamphlets and info sheets on the following:

READ MORE: -Click on the links below

Gauteng Dept of Health app – Mpilo:
Discovery Health: The Discovery website has useful information related to the situation in general, and related to members in particular.

Netcare has an online chatbot that addresses questions about COVID-19, using WhatsApp

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