Victorian bushfires

Bushfire image at night with firefightersThe Royal Children’s Hospital acknowledges the enormous devastation across Victoria and neighbouring states, and we pay tribute to those combatting fires and anyone affected by this tragedy.

A State of Disaster has been declared as significant bushfires are burning across Victoria and impacting communities across the state.

We ask all families to do what they can to stay safe and closely follow the advice of emergency services.

Currently bushfire smoke is impacting air quality across large parts of our state, and will continue to do so for some time. The situation is rapidly changing, so it is important to keep checking for updates.

  • Hazardous air quality may lead to:
    • serious aggravation of health effects in children 14 years and younger, pregnant women and those with existing heart or lung conditions.
    • serious increase in respiratory and other effects in everyone else and many people might have symptoms like coughing or shortness of breath.

Evacuations are underway, but everyone in an area heavily impacted by smoke, especially those in sensitive groups, should relocate where possible and safe to do so. If you are unable to leave, stay inside, close windows and doors and reduce activity. If you must go outside, use a P2 face mask if available.

Children with a heart or lung condition, including asthma may be more sensitive to the effects of breathing in smoke. If your child suffers from any of these conditions, medication should be kept close-by and taken as prescribed. Children with asthma should follow their asthma management plan and keep their reliever medication on hand.

000 should be called for any child experiencing difficulty breathing, wheezing or tightness in the chest.

For further information about a specific fire or emergency incident, listen to your local emergency radio station for updates or visit

For the latest emergency management news, please visit


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