An emergency physician has warned that the effects from yesterday’s dust storm could “persist for days” and people should be vigilant with their health.
Jordan Webb said yesterday afternoon there had not been a notable increase in people going to Tamworth hospital’s emergency department.
But that could change in coming days, he said, especially for at-risk groups: children, older people, and those with chronic conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, emphysema and heart disease.
“With events like these, we certainly see significant increases in presentations relating to breathing difficulties, and some people have become critically unwell and even died in situations like this,” Dr Webb said.
“We haven’t seen many presentations yet, but these breathing issues can persist for days after dust storms like these, so we want people to be vigilant.”
Some symptoms to look out for were shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing.
Those with management plans for their asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) should “adhere to them rigidly and seek help early.”
However, even those without a chronic condition could still have breathing difficulties, and should seek help from their GP or hospital emergency department.
However, “In case of emergency, please dial triple zero,” Dr Webb said.
The weather bureau anticipated the dust would clear from later yesterday as it moved off the east coast.
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