Covid Victoria: 6 new circumstances, race for the supply of Melbourne’s mysterious case

Contact tracers are confident they’ve got hold of the mysterious case that emerged from a testing site in Melbourne. It comes as Victoria registered six more new cases.

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Victoria has registered six new locally acquired Covid-19 cases as the state enjoys its second day of freedom after a fifth lockdown.

The health department confirmed seven new local cases around 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, but one – a mysterious case – was announced on Wednesday.

The health department said all new cases, with the exception of the mysterious infection, were related to existing outbreaks and all but one were in isolation for their entire period of infection.

Four of the most recent cases are students of the Bacchus Marsh Grammar who only got a positive result on their test on day 13.

The remaining two are household contacts connected to the Lacrosse apartments in Docklands.

Sewage tests in the apartments revealed an unexpected Covid detection, which led to additional tests that uncovered the new cases.

More than 500 residents of the Lacrosse apartments remain isolated.

Meanwhile, a number of household and social contacts of the infected mystery case have already returned negative tests.

The man, who is a traffic controller at a testing site in Moonee Ponds, visited his partner in Newport while he was infected.

The tests at the Newport apartment block are ongoing.

Health officials are still trying to find out how the man who works at the Moonee Ponds testing site acquired Covid-19, with the site being a focus.

The man, in his mid-20s, developed symptoms on Monday, was tested on Tuesday and delivered a positive result on Wednesday morning.

However, contact tracers have not yet been able to determine where the man contracted the virus or epidemiologically link the case to current outbreaks.

They will search the records to see if any known case has recently been swabbed on the area potentially infecting the man while waiting for a test.

On Wednesday, Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said the risk to people getting through in their cars was “extremely small” as most would not roll their windows down to speak to traffic controllers.

“(But) like we said (Tuesday), it’s not over yet, there will be ongoing risks and … ongoing potential for a break-in in Victoria so neither of us need to let our vigilance off.”

Six new Tier 2 exposure locations – in Frankston, Yarraville and Altona North – were added on Wednesday afternoon, including Borrock Square Woolworths and the Karingal Hub shopping mall on July 24th.

The Moonee Valley testing site closed for a thorough clean on Wednesday, but the Department of Health announced that it will likely reopen on Thursday.

Health Secretary Martin Foley said there would be “normal risk assessments” so testing staff would likely be viewed as primary close contacts and forced into a 14-day quarantine.

When asked about the likelihood of the case being “false positive”, Mr. Foley said that PCR testing was “the gold standard”.

Prime Minister Daniel Andrews said genomic sequencing – which is slated to return Thursday – would give an indication of where the transfer took place.

Extensive interviews with the man continued late Wednesday night and the contact tracers were confident they had the case under control.

“We are good and really close. It’s just about following all leads, ”said Andrews.

The prime minister said it was always worrying “when you have an unlinked case”.

But he added: “We will put our arms around it”.

Acting Chief Health Officer Professor Ben Cowie said the recent Victoria’s outbreak highlighted the need for vaccination.

“Today’s cases remind us that Covid-19 cases are still very high in the community,” said Prof. Cowie.

“We have seen this virus spread within households, restaurants and sports stadiums. And that’s why it’s so important to follow the restrictions that apply now.

“You cannot visit other people in their homes. The delta variant has already spread to households, and it seems that the attack rate within households is actually higher than what we saw before. “

It comes when the people of Camberwell were put on high alert following sewage discoveries in the area.

The health department said the evidence could be due to someone who had Covid-19 but was no longer infectious and the virus was still shedding – or it could be due to an active but undiagnosed case in the area.

Camberwell residents with even the mildest symptoms are encouraged to get tested.

In the meantime, the Royal Children’s Hospital has introduced a real-time online traffic light system to warn parents of expected waiting times in its two Covid test clinics.

It is the same system that is successfully used in the hospital emergency room.

NSW INFECTIONS SPIKE, TWO MORE DEATHS

NSW recorded 239 new infections overnight – a new record – and two more deaths related to Covid. Only 81 of the new cases were isolated during their infection phase.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said, “Unfortunately we also had a pretty sharp surge in the number of cases overnight … we can only assume that given the number of infected people in the community, things are likely to get worse before they get better.”

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AMBITIOUS MELB CUP CROWD PLAN

A crowd of up to 60,000 could populate Flemington Racecourse every day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival as part of a Victoria Racing Club plan, despite the coronavirus masking major events.

Major Events Minister Martin Pakula announced on Wednesday a possible event insurance program to cover Covid cancellations later this year, hours before the Royal Melbourne Show was canceled for the second consecutive year.

Coronavirus clusters at MCG and AAMI Park, where onlookers were infected while queuing outside, have raised concerns about the crowds at sports and major events until a large portion of the population is fully vaccinated.

The fate of the AFL’s grand final remains uncertain and fans are not expected for football games in Melbourne for another fourteen days.

But after writing to members this week, the PRC signaled that it remains optimistic about the size of the Melbourne Cup audience.

The message, sent as part of a subscription renewal pitch, raised eyebrows among members who were concerned about paying full price for events that might not allow crowds.

VRC chief Steve Rosich said Flemington plans to “safely accommodate up to 60,000 guests in multiple zones at Flemington Racecourse each day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival 2021”.

He said the PRC would be guided by “Racing Victoria and Government Policy” in checking vaccine passports.

Melbourne’s “Night Mayor” James Young said the pass was the only ticket to a grand AFL final and the crowded Melbourne Cup Carnival.

“I would like to believe that the Victorian government has a secret goal of getting tens of thousands of people into a huge gambling and fashion event and getting a spring race vaccination certificate,” said Young.

“It is more optimistic that we need vaccination records for a big AFL final at the MCG. If we don’t have this rule, the grand finale won’t take place here and I want it back in Melbourne. “

When asked about the events industry on Wednesday, Mr Pakula said the latest coronavirus outbreak had shown caution should be exercised.

He also pointed out the possibility of insurance if events are canceled.

“We have been working on an insurance concept for some time,” says Pakula.

“It’s very complex. It is not easy to get a product on the market, and it is not easy for event or event companies to insure against either cancellation or reduction in density. “

SCHOOL SPORTS ON THE RETURN

School sport is set to return this week after a Department of Education backflip.

The rules were changed on Wednesday evening to allow sports games between schools with a density limit of one person per 4 m².

There must also be strict records and a maximum of 100 people per indoor area and 300 outside.

The rules do not allow large school gatherings such as ceremonies, gatherings, and school formalities.

Excursions are allowed, but only with students from a single school. Camps and overnight stays can take place as long as they are limited to individual schools and comply with travel restrictions.

There are no temperature controls, but face masks are worn indoors and outdoors for all students over the age of 12.

Face masks do not have to be worn during school sports.

Schools are also encouraged to increase indoor ventilation and maximize outdoor learning where possible.

The regulations also allow participation in vaccination appointments and the resumption of care before and after school.

Schools are also called upon to reduce the mixing of student groups with staggered start and end times and staggered lunch breaks. The staff is also required to minimize work across different locations.

The new rules for returning to school this week also allow singing, brass and woodwind classes and groups, as long as the distance between the performers is 2 meters.

Pools can be used, but there will be no transition to kindergarten or 7th grade, ideas, photos, non-essential visitors or community groups using the school facilities during school hours.

INDONESIAN RETURN FLIGHT PLAN

Qantas is seeking a return flight for “vulnerable” Australians stranded in Indonesia as the country records more than 2,000 Covid-19 deaths daily.

Approximately 780 Australians, including nationals and permanent residents of Indonesia, are registered with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade as willing to return.

“We are working with Qantas on an option to facilitate a commercial flight for vulnerable Australians departing from Indonesia.

“The government is reviewing all available options to help vulnerable Australians in Indonesia return,” said a DFAT spokesman.

Australians can no longer travel through Singapore as the country has closed the route to Indonesia due to rising infections.

Indonesia recorded 2,069 deaths on Tuesday. There have been 86,835 Covid-related deaths in the country. More than half of the recent deaths have come from Central Java, East Java and West Java provinces as the pandemic in Jakarta’s former epicenter showed signs of decline.

Since the pandemic began, the government has made 154 flights possible, on which more than 23,000 Australians have returned.

“We have provided various types of assistance to many more Australians, including returning through commercial routes,” said the DFAT spokesman.

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