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Our department’s response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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We’re working hard to support government, industry and the community through the COVID-19 pandemic. Our department is working to:

  • source and facilitate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), critical medical supplies and ventilators 
  • support transport and distribution across many industries
  • support the energy and resources sectors
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Sourcing medical supplies

We’re working closely with Australian industry and the Department of Health to source and facilitate PPE, critical medical supplies and ventilators for the National Medical Stockpile. 

Supporting local manufacturing and supply chains 

We’re working closely with Australian industry to continue ramping up local manufacturing and supply of critical products. See some of the latest developments: 

We’re backing Australian manufacturers to modernise how they do business. 200 projects will gain support from the Manufacturing Modernisation Fund to create an expected 2,600 new jobs at this critical time. See funding for manufacturers to modernise and reskill on the business.gov.au website

Building business response capability 

We’re monitoring stocks and demand, and reporting back to business on trends so they can make decisions quickly.  

The Australian Information Industry Association has developed a website www.australianbusinesscontinuity.com.au  to support Australian businesses working remotely. 

See how businesses are pivoting in their response to COVID-19: 

See business.gov.au for business support

Ensuring quality medical PPE and equipment

We're ensuring products and equipment meet the highest standards. 

PPE and hand sanitiser standards and conformance 

We’re working with Australian Technical Infrastructure Alliance peak bodies to ensure PPE and hand sanitiser quality. See the standards and conformance information summary for PPE and hand sanitiser

Read more about Australia’s standards and conformance infrastructure

NMI COVID-19 measurement services

The National Measurement Institute is:

See our COVID-19 measurement services.

Manufacturing non-medical reusable cloth face masks  

What is a reusable cloth face mask? What should manufacturers consider if they are looking to supply the market?  

There is detailed advice from the World Health Organisation (WHO), as well as Commonwealth, state and territory government health agencies.  

Guidance on making a cloth mask

The Therapeutic Goods Administration has clarified that these types of face masks are not intended for use in a clinical setting or explicitly to prevent the transmission of disease between persons and therefore are not subject to the same regulations as surgical masks or some respirators. More information is on the TGA website.

Health advice on the use of face coverings in the community to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 may impact on consumer demand for reusable cloth face masks, and is subject to change. The Department of Health website provides up to date advice.

Expert scientific advice, science funding and online learning

Australia’s Chief Scientist is leading a team of experts from across Australia and New Zealand to provide rapid answers to pressing COVID-19 questions. Ministers and key decision makers can put questions to the Rapid research information forum. Some questions already answered include:

CSIRO’s been given $220 million to upgrade its Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness high containment biosecurity research facility. This will ensure scientists can continue identifying, preventing and responding to the increasing threat of diseases, including those spreading from animals to humans.

Questacon, Australia’s science and technology centre in Canberra is moving science learning programs online while the physical centre is closed.

Reliable and secure energy supplies 

We’re working to ensure reliable and secure energy supply for all Australians through and beyond the pandemic. This includes electricity, gas and liquid fuel like petrol, diesel and jet fuel. 

Read more on energy.gov.au.

Ministerial media releases and speeches 

All four portfolio Cabinet Ministers have issued media releases and/or speeches in response to COVID-19. 

Minister Andrews

Minister Taylor

Minister Pitt

Minister Cash

For ministerial media releases visit the Ministers for the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources website

Contact us

Email COVID@industry.gov.au to offer your assistance, or to ask about our department’s COVID-19 response. We’ve received a high volume of offers of assistance. We’ll reply as quickly as possible, and thank you for your patience and understanding if there are delays.

If you are a business offering assistance, please include:

  • your ABN or ACN
  • the primary products or services you may be able to provide
  • relevant certifications for any medical-grade products
  • details of your production capacity and delivery timing