Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19

We know it's a challenging time and that you may have questions about COVID-19 and your cancer treatment.

Below is a list of frequently asked questions which may assist you.

If you have further questions are on active treatment please call your Patient Navigator and if you're not on active treatment you can get all your questions answered about COVID-19 and cancer by specialist cancer nurses at Cancer Council Australia. 

You should still attend your appointments and we’re working closely with the Department of Health to protect our patients, families, carers, visitors and health care workers from COVID-19.

You are asked to help by practising social distancing, good hand hygiene, wearing a mask, and following the Department of Health guidelines on COVID-19 testing and isolation.

When you arrive, you will have your temperature checked and be asked to answer some screening questions, including whether you have recently travelled to a site of known heightened community transmission. Visitors from these exposure sites will not be able to enter the building.

You’ll also be provided with a mask and asked to wear this for the duration of your visit.  Visitors are asked to review our visitor limits in place to safeguard our patients against the virus.

If you are a patient from (or have regular contact with a person from) a location with known community transmission, please discuss this with your patient navigator before arriving at Peter Mac, as a telehealth appointment may be arranged for you.

Please also review our visitor limits in place to safeguard our patients against the virus.

Cancer treatment, for example chemotherapy, can lower the immune system. 

If you are currently undergoing or have recently undergone cancer treatment you may have a weaker immune system and it’s therefore important that you take additional precautions to reduce your risk of infection from COVID-19.

It’s important to be aware of the symptoms of COVID-19  and to contact your treating team by phone if you are starting to feel unwell for further advice. 

If you have serious symptoms such as difficulty breathing you should call 000 immediately and ask for an ambulance.

If you are not currently receiving treatment for your cancer but are worried about COVID-19 please contact the Cancer Council Australia hotline on 13 11 20.

Cancer is a high priority ‘category one’ condition and most cancer cases require prompt action.

It is normal and understandable to be anxious about visiting a hospital or treatment facility at this time, but Peter Mac is working closely with Victorian government to do everything possible to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

We have robust infection prevention measures in place including screening at entry points, increased cleaning and social distancing measures in our waiting areas.

We have also massively increased the use of telehealth consultations to reduce the amount of people needing to come into the building for follow-ups. 

Delaying treatment may impact outcomes so it’s important to speak with your treating team if you have any concerns.

In line with latest government advice, limited numbers of visitors are permitted on our wards.

Please visit the Visitor Information and Restrictions for further information.

It’s important that you’re well informed and reading the most reliable information about COVID-19.

The Department of Health has comprehensive information about COVID-19 and if you have general questions about cancer and COVID-19 there are resources available from Cancer Council Australia and Cancer Australia

If you have specific questions relating to your cancer or treatment, please contact your Patient Navigator.