25 March 2020

Positive COVID-19 cases jump from one to 10 in MLHD in three days, 12 in South East

| Edwina Mason
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COVID-19 is beginning to accelerate across Southern NSW. Photo: File.

There’s been a tenfold increase of positive Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in the Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD) in the past three days, with a further nine cases identified since Sunday night.

In the Southern NSW Local Health District, covering the South East, Monaro, Tablelands and Coastal regions, there are now 12 confirmed cases after almost 1000 tests have been administered.

The new cases of COVID-19 are located in Albury, Griffith, Federation, Cootamundra-Gundagai and Wagga Wagga LGAs and were confirmed on Tuesday.

This follows the first reported case on Sunday in Albury Wodonga, taking the total number of COVID-19 positive cases for the MLHD to 10. All cases notified were diagnosed after travelling overseas or being in contact with a confirmed case.

In the South East region, there are three positive diagnoses in Bega, two in the Eurobodalla, three in Goulburn, three in Palerang and one case in Queanbeyan. No positive diagnoses have been made in Yass, Crookwell, Snowy Mountains or Cooma at this stage.

COVID testing is taking place at the South East regional hospital in Bega. Photo: Facebook

According to the MLHD, all patients have experienced mild to moderate symptoms and are in self isolation to ensure they do not transmit the virus. They are being managed at home with the support of their GP and a daily check-up with local health services.

The MLHD Public Health Unit has interviewed each person to determine their movements while they were infectious.

Where individuals are identified as close contacts, the Public Health Unit directs these contacts to self-isolate for 14 days after they were last in contact with the case.

To date, 987 people have been tested for COVID-19 across the MLHD, covering the Riverina, Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area and the South Western Slopes of NSW. 987 tests have also been administered in the Southern NSW region, covering the Coast, Tablelands and Monaro.

COVID-19 testing clinics are operating in Griffith and Wagga Wagga with more clinics to be opened across the district in coming weeks.

Practising hand hygiene and social distancing remain the most effective ways to reduce transmission of the virus.

MLHD recommends community members to follow NSW Health advice around social distancing and self-isolation to slow the spread of the virus.

Reducing contact between people – unless absolutely necessary, especially those in our population who may be more vulnerable or susceptible to the illness because of age or weakened immunity – is critical to slowing the spread and impact of COVID-19.

Residents should follow the advice given by NSW Health authorities and stay up-to-date on the website.

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