COVID and winter illness frequently asked questions – updated 08/09/23
Winter is nearly over, but the winter illnesses are still around. This year we are dealing with not only the usual common cold viruses but influenza, RSV and covid-19.
Prevention is all about vaccination and is one of the most important ways to prevent influenza and covid 19.
If you develop a viral type illness which usually involves symptoms such as fatigue, fever, runny nose, headache, sore throat, cough, body aches then these are some general signs/symptoms that should prompt a more urgent assessment by a doctor both regarding children and adults:
If during the day between 8am-6pm Monday to Friday, call the medical centre. Otherwise Accident and Healthcare is open every day 8am-9pm, otherwise present to Tauranga Hospital.
Signs/Symptoms of Concern:
- Increased work of breathing in kids (such as chest indrawing under or between their ribs) or shortness of breath in adults
- Chest pain
- Dehydration e.g., not able to keep fluids down and reduced urine production
- Light-headedness or fainting
- A combination of headache, light sensitivity and neck stiffness
- Feeling unwell with fever and a new rash appears
Most of these viral illnesses can be managed with rest, increased fluid intake, using paracetamol and ibuprofen (as long as you can take these medications), over the counter remedies for sore throats and time. Most viral illness should improve between 5-10 days. A mild dry cough may persist in children for the week following their recovery. However, if this is wet, productive and persistent then would warrant a review.
If you have covid-19 please continue to record this on your covid record, our team then receive a notification and contact high risk patients including those eligible for antiviral treatment.
If you have any concerns about yourself or your child please book an appointment through reception, if you have symptoms such as fever, sore throat and cough then you will be booked in for a phone consult initially with a doctor who can then make a plan including bringing you in for an exam later that day if needed.
You should report the results of your rapid antigen test (RAT) if you test positive or negative. You can do this online through My Covid Record or by calling the helpline. Mount Medical Centre is NOT able to do this for you unless the RAT is done supervised at the Medical Centre which must be booked in when you develop symptoms of covid or need household contact testing.
More information is on:
If you have not signed up for My Covid Record:
Anyone in New Zealand aged 12 or over can sign up for My Covid Record. First, you will need to create a My Health Account, which allows you to access your health information online. You will need your own email address to create an account. This can be done at: mycovidrecord.health.nz
If you have signed up for My Covid Record:
1. Log in to mycovidrecord.health.nz
2. Under ‘Report a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) result’, tap or click ‘Report a test result’.
Get help using My Covid Record
If you do not have a unique email address or valid ID, or need help with My Covid Record, contact the Ministry of Health team, 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week. It will help to have your NHI number ready.
You can now report a RAT result for someone else through your own My Covid Record account.
You will need their:
- full name
- date of birth
- NHI number
You can report a RAT result over the phone if you are having trouble using My Covid Record, or want to report someone else’s RAT result and do not have their NHI.
- Call: 0800 222 478 and choose option 3
Please do not call the medical centre for this.
Request for a Medical Certificate for proof of Covid positive status
We do not have the capacity to be doing these, our guidance is that you can show your positive test result from My Covid Record to your employer and that should suffice.
Vaccination after having had Covid 19:
Must wait 12 weeks after recovery before having any covid vaccine be it 1st/2nd/3rd or booster. IMAC advice.
Using PCR swabs:
These should only be used if someone remains unwell with covid like symptoms AND they have repeatedly tested negative on a RAT (at least twice on 2 different days) and they are immunosuppressed, will need consult with doctor.
Those who have had covid should NOT have a PCR swab done within the 3 months following infection. If they develop covid symptoms again then they should have a RAT via a GP Consult.
Prescriptions: to minimise contact we can send electronic prescriptions directly to a pharmacy so please include the pharmacy details when requesting a repeat prescription. We can also now send Pathlab and Radiology requests electronically.
We thank you for your understanding in an ever-changing time.
Mount Medical Centre.