Published on 19 November 2021

COVID-19: Being Ready to Quarantine

As there are now more COVID-19 cases in the community, there is a greater chance that we will be exposed to the virus and may develop COVID-19. Even if you are vaccinated, you can still get COVID-19 and will have to isolate at home. 

People who are infected with COVID-19 need to stay home to prevent spreading the virus to others. There are some simple things you can do to be prepared in case you, your family or housemates have to go into quarantine at home.

What do you need to be ready to quarantine?

It's best to prepare before someone in your house gets sick. Have a think about the things you use on an everyday basis. If you are in quarantine, you will not be able to go out to the shops so it’s best to have some supplies ready at home.  

Most large supermarkets now offer online shopping and delivery services, whilst some smaller independent supermarkets can take your order and payment over the phone and also organise home delivery.

Talk with friends and relatives who don’t live with you about supporting each other if one household has to be quarantined. You can have others drop off groceries or supplies at the front door – just make sure you don't have contact with them and that they don’t come inside your house.

For information on support and emergency relief packages or help getting groceries, Victorians can visit the Government's information hub for more on quarantine and isolation or call the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398.

Food and drink

Try to have a two-week supply of non-perishable food items in the pantry. Choose some foods that don’t need to be in the refrigerator and can stay on the shelf for a long time. Include items such as:

  • Breakfast cereals
  • Pasta, rice, noodles and grains
  • Tinned fruit, vegetables, soup, fish, beans and lentils
  • Hot drinks like coffee, hot chocolate or tea
  • Long-life or powdered milk
  • Snacks like muesli bars, nuts or crackers
  • Condiments like oil, sugar and salt
  • Spreads like vegemite, jam and peanut butter
  • Some extra bottles of water
  • Also consider items that can go in the freezer – bread, fruit, vegetables, ready meals, meat, chicken and fish products.
  • For babies, make sure you have a good supply of baby food, formula, nappies and wipes.
  • If you have pets, stock up on some pet food.

Household and cleaning items

Consider items you use day-to-day as well as those that will help you reduce the risk of the virus spreading in the household:

  • Toilet paper, tissues, paper towels, shampoo, toothpaste, soap, laundry detergent, dishwashing detergent, sanitary products
  • Disinfectant wipes, hand sanitiser, thermometer, facemasks


Talk to your pharmacist or GP about which medication is right for you and buy enough to last you a few weeks. If you have a repeat prescription think about ordering ahead and ask about home delivery service or click and collect that friends or family can drop off for you.

You may also want to have some medicines in the house to help manage your COVID-19 symptoms such as: 

  • Medicine to soothe the throat and a cough
  • Rehydration products/electrolytes for fluid loss
  • Non-prescription medication for pain and fever

Taking care of your health and wellbeing

Being in self-isolation or self-quarantine may be stressful, frustrating and boring. Family and friends can also experience similar impacts to their mental health and wellbeing.

There are some things that you can do to look after yourself during this time:

  • Visit the Glen Eira Library and Glen Eira Leisure websites for a range of online activities, classes and services:
  • Keep up your daily routine as much as possible, such as keeping your regular sleeping hours, eating healthy foods and drinking enough water.
  • Stay connected with family and friends via telephone or online (eg. Skype, Facetime).
  • Consider finding an exercise or yoga video online (eg. YouTube).
  • Avoid over-indulging in alcohol or comfort foods.
  • Do things that help you relax and use isolation as an opportunity to do activities you don’t usually have time for.
  • Be aware of overexposure to news sources and social media. Keeping informed can be helpful, but repeated bulletins about COVID-19 may be overwhelming.
  • Be aware that you may experience changes in your mood or feelings, including periods of sadness, anxiety, frustration or uncertainty.

If these feelings become severe or are not going away, please seek help: You can also call  Lifeline, 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue, 1300 224 636 for support.

For more information about COVID-19 including testing, isolation, vaccination and financial support visit:

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