COVID-19 Update and social constraints begin gradual easing over May

To date, Australia has tested over 633,107 residents with a positive return rate of 1.1%.


WEEK Eight of social distancing and there are some hopeful signs that compliance is working.

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Nationally there are 6,801 cases, 95 deaths and 5,817 people have recovered.

Over the past week, around 13 new cases are reported each day, mostly in NSW.

Good news is there has been a steady and sustained decline in cases across Australia following a peak in March.

From an NSW Health perspective, there are currently 3,035 cases with 44 lives lost (as at 2 May).

For comparison, last week News Of The Area (NOTA) reported there were 3,002 cases (up 33 this week).

Tragically, there are two new cases at Newmarch House in Sydney West, increasing the total to 61, including 24 staff and 37 residents.

Fourteen residents have sadly passed away.

In Hunter New England, the number of cases is at 277, down from 278 last week.

This is the first time NOTA has reported a decline with the rate steadied and no new cases in the last 24 hours.

As reported last week, COVIDSafe, the new mobile phone application is up and running.

Join the 4.25 million Australians who have downloaded the application.

Widespread use of the application will help to ease social restrictions.

When and how restrictions are further eased depends on three tests set by the Australian Government National Cabinet.

First is increased testing, second is greater contact tracing, and the third is the ability of the health sector to contain surges.

COVIDSafe supports the second, providing fast and effective contact tracing.

In addition, the NSW Government has started easing some social restrictions.

From 1 May, two adults (and any dependent children) can visit another person’s home to provide care or support.

NSW Health also has COVID-19 Clinics up and running across NSW to test people.

Testing is being expanded and is recommended if you have a fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath and meet the testing criteria.

The closest COVID-19 site is the Raymond Terrace Respiratory Clinic.

Call and book on 4983 0900 and call again on arrival and remain in the car until further instruction.

The National Coronavirus Helpline is 1800 020 080.


By Sandra MURRAY

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