IN DEPTH

Here's what you need to know today

Here's what you need to know today

ACM, the publisher of this website, has journalists in every state and territory in Australia and below we bring you the best of our content from across our network today.

We hope it can help you find your path during this strangest period in our lives.

Here are some quick links to the key content today:

Australia's healthcare workers on the frontline

While many Australians stay home to help stop the spread of COVID-19, our hard-working nurses, doctors, hospital cleaners, administrators and others continue their vitally important duties protecting and improving health and well-being of people in their communities.

Now more than ever, they have our gratitude and respect.

That's why the editors of news publisher ACM's 14 daily newspapers - covering key population centres across NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and the ACT - were asked to tell the story of one local health worker as a tribute to the sort of care, dedication and expertise that is helping Australia's healthcare system meet the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

Armidale Community Services Centre shutdown after positive COVID-19 tests

ALMOST 20 staff at a government department office in Armidale have been ordered into isolation after fears they were exposed to coronavirus at work.

The Leader can reveal at least 19 staff at the Armidale Community Services Centre have been forced to self-isolate while they nervously await COVID-19 test results.

It comes after two child protection workers tested positive to the potentially deadly virus on Friday and are receiving medical treatment.

On Monday, the Armidale office was shutdown for a thorough, specialist clean, a Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) spokeswoman said.

Essential travel message not being heard by all in Tasmania

Tasmania Police and Premier Peter Gutwein are continuing to stress the importance for North-West residents to stay home to save lives with the coronavirus outbreak in the region.

However, Harvey Norman Devonport electrical proprietor Rob Wing is seeing first hand that the message is not being heard by all.

Mr Wing has a skeleton crew of eight employees working to answer phones and organise the delivery of goods, but he said customers are still turning up at his store.

"People are still coming to the door, they don't realise the severity of it and they think you can still go out," he said.

Even after restrictions, state can expect 'different way of life'

Tasmanians will experience a "different way of life" for the foreseeable future, even once coronavirus-related restrictions begin to be loosened, Premier Peter Gutwein says.

Mr Gutwein's comments come after Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Thursday that it would be at least another four weeks before nationwide restrictions would start to be gradually lifted.

The coronavirus outbreak on Tasmania's North-West Coast has defied the national trend of declining COVID-19 case numbers, shaping as the new virus epicentre in Australia.

The Premier said the state government needed to get "well on top of this outbreak" before it would be in a position to safely lift some restrictions.

"I think people should put out of their mind the fact that in four weeks' time, perhaps, that we will go back to pubs and clubs opening and being able to mingle and do the things that we're used to doing," he said. "There will be a different way of life for all of us whilst we combat this disease."

The women preventing the coronavirus spreading at the NSW/Vic border

Leisa Bridges and Alice Driver are on the frontline of the region's fight against COVID-19.

Their primary role is to prevent coronavirus from spreading through Albury-Wodonga and surrounds, and to date they are winning the war.

Ms Bridges, in the role of infection control consultant for Albury Wodonga Health, is drawing on her first-hand experience of combatting COVID, as part of an international team, when it first appeared in Saudi Arabia in the early 2010s.

Ms Driver works alongside Ms Bridges managing the drive-through swabbing clinic in Wodonga.

"(Saudi Arabia) had a lot of healthcare workers acquire coronavirus," Ms Bridges said..

"We had a couple of months when it was quite bad, but once we got over there, made some changes and recommendations the outbreak settled down and decreased."

She said planning for the Australian response ramped up in late January, with the decision to shut borders to overseas travellers a key factor in limiting the spread compared to levels seen overseas.

Preparations included managing patient flow, cleaning regimes and procedures around the safe use of personal protective equipment.

Flowering daffodils will symbolise community unity through COVID-19

Fifteen thousand daffodils will flower in Daylesford this spring as a reminder of community unity and strength throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

Owners of Wombat Hill Nursery Jeff and Donna Thornycroft launched the Daylesford Erlicheer project on Thursday.

The initiative encouraged members of the community to pre-purchase Erlicheer daffodil bulbs for themselves and their neighbours at wholesale price to plant outside their Daylesford homes.

Mr Thornycroft said the idea was intended to unite community and provide an activity to do at home.

He said each year when the bulbs flower, they will be a reminder of how the community got through this difficult time.

If you're looking to stay up to date on COVID-19, but would rather receive the main points direct to your inbox sign up for our twice-daily digest here.

This story Here's what you need to know today first appeared on The Canberra Times.