The NSW Premier has revealed her biggest worry about the potential spread of coronavirus in Sydney, saying it’s one of several things that keeps her up at night.
Gladys Berejiklian told the Today show on Friday she was concerned the transmission of a couple of coronavirus cases a week remained a mystery as the source could not be tracked.
This means the virus continues to percolate in hotspot suburbs.
“The one thing that keeps me – well there are several things that keep me awake – but the one thing that worries me is for six weeks we have been doing really well, but every week we are getting a couple of cases with no clear identifiable source and that worries us,” she told the morning program.
“What that tells us is in south-western and western Sydney, the virus is circulating amongst the community.”
She said she had a stern message for residents of those areas to get tested even if they had the slightest symptom or had been exposed as a close contact to a venue linked to a case.
“Please come forward and get tested and stay home for two weeks,” she said.
“It is so important for that to occur because we really worry about that community transmission.”
Premier reveals danger of mask mandate
When asked why the premier urged people to wear masks rather than make them mandatory, Ms Berejikllian said the state was “not at that place yet”.
“What we really want people to do first and foremost is to come forward and get tested and isolate for two weeks if they have been asked to do so,” she said.
“That is the most critical thing we need people to do. If you have the virus and symptoms and you think you are OK walking around in a mask, that is really dangerous.
“Masks have a role to play but they are not the only role.”
Ms Berejiklian said there had been strong advice on when people should wear masks, including at times when people can’t guarantee social distancing like at a shopping centre or supermarket.
“If I was catching a bus or a train I definitely would wear a mask, and in a place of worship I have made my mum take her masks to church and she has been wearing them to church and that is really important, especially for older vulnerable people,” she said.
“So we know where the virus is transmitting. It is an indoor spaces, usually amongst people who are familiar with each other. You are more likely to get it from people that you know than people you don’t know.
“Yes, you can pick it up randomly but you are more likely to pick it up from people you know.
“Those high risk indoor venues or enclosed spaces are what we worry about and if you can’t guarantee social distancing in those spaces you should be wearing a mask.”
Nine new coronavirus cases in NSW
NSW has recorded nine new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases to 3,747.
Five of these cases were locally acquired and linked to known cases, including one who worked at Dooleys Lidcombe Catholic Club, one student from Tangara School for Girls, two household contacts of known cases and one staff member at Liverpool Hospital.
One cases reported on Friday was also locally acquired but a source is yet to be identified.
Three people are returned travellers from overseas.
Overnight a new case is a student who attends St Vincent’s College at Potts Point, in Sydney’s inner city, which has been closed for deep cleaning.
Contact-tracing investigations are underway.
With the identification of a second case linked to Dooleys Lidcombe Catholic Club, patrons who were there at the same time as the worker are now considered a close contact and must now self-isolate for 14 days, get tested for coronavirus and monitor their symptoms.
More information about what time these cases were at the club, can be found here on the NSW Health website.
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