WATTLE Range Mayor Des Noll has urged the community to do its part in slowing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The call comes following seven confirmed cases within the Limestone Coast.
In a statement, Mr Noll said he participated in a video conference with Premier Steven Marshall early last week who advised it was “not a matter of if, but a matter of when” the virus hits.
Mr Noll was advised 93pc of people who contracted the virus would not require significant medical treatment, with many not even showing symptoms.
The other 7pc would need the support of the health system.
“If they do not get that support, many of them will die,” Mr Noll said.
“This is why it is so important that we slow the spread of the virus down as we need to match the capacity of our health system with the number of patients that will require it over the coming months.”
Mr Noll said the State Government had prepared a number of metropolitan-based former hospitals for the influx of patients.
“They are also buying additional respirators and other equipment with the aim of minimising the mortality rate of the 7pc of the population that are at risk,” he said.
“The most important thing we can do as a community is to help slow the spread of the virus so the health system can cope.
“I understand that we are all feeling anxious about the months ahead, but please let me reassure you that we are in a very fortunate position to be living where we are.”
Mr Noll said the region’s geographic location provided residents with greater notice of how the virus spread and how to stop it.
“Our State and Federal Governments are doing a fantastic job at preparing us for this as they have access to the best advice in the world,” he said.
“I trust them explicitly to guide us through these very challenging times.
“That said it is not just up to the government to manage the spread of the virus, we all have a job to do and I urge each and every member of the community to follow the government’s simple but effective advice.”
The advice includes washing hands regularly, staying at least one and a half metres away from each other and isolating themselves if they are feeling unwell.