NSW is on high alert after eight new locally transmitted cases of coronavirus were reported in the state.
The new cases in southwest Sydney include three cases that were reported on Tuesday night after the 8pm cut-off for Wednesday’s numbers.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters a link had been established between the new cluster of three people while five of the cases were linked to a known existing cluster.
Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said the first cluster of five is believed to be linked back to the Liverpool dialysis cluster.
“Of that cluster, we had one person who hosted a social event at the home. And that was a female in their 30s, who also is a health care worker at Liverpool hospital. That health care worker did not have symptoms,” she said.
Two of her household contacts, a man in his 80s and a woman in her 50s, also became infected. Two women attending the social event, one in their 30s and one in their 50s, have also tested positive.
The second cluster, involves a man in his 50s and a woman also in her 50s, from one household. A male co-worker of the woman has also tested positive. They work at a private health clinic.
There were also four new cases in quarantine from overseas arrivals bringing total new cases announced on Thursday to 12.
Dr Chant said they did not yet know where the second cluster of three people originated, but investigations were ongoing.
Health authorities are also investigating whether the clusters are linked.
She urged everybody in the community to be vigilant for symptoms and called on any diners who were at Ripples Restaurant in Milsons Point on Saturday October 3 from 8pm to 10.30pm to immediately isolate and get tested.
Health authorities are looking at accessing credit card records as well as they are having difficulties in ascertaining everyone who was at that venue.
“It’s important that we contact everyone there, and are very clear that we haven’t missed anyone,” she said.
Following an urgent call for testing after dwindling daily totals, which fell to the lowest rate since June 9, tests rose to 12,498 compared to 5,970 in the previous 24 hours.
NSW businesses ‘aren’t taking it seriously’
Ms Berejiklian reiterated just how contagious the virus was and urged businesses to ensure they were enacting a Covid-safe plan.
“I remember during the course of the pandemic a few months ago, when I used words like ‘don’t mingle, don’t use the same pen, don’t use the same cutlery’, people perhaps thought that I was being too pedantic,” she said.
“But this is a really contagious virus. While most of us can carry out our daily lives in as close to as [normal] as possible, we cannot let our guards down with the social distancing, with what we touch, how we touch it.”
Health Minister Brad Hazzard added businesses needed to be taking the coronavirus far more seriously than what they were.
“If we think back to where most of the cases have been over the last few months, it has been in venues where people have been out enjoying themselves, pubs and other restaurants and so on,” he said.
“The bottom line here is that everybody running a business, they want to make sure that they keep the business open.
“Make sure that someone greets them, use the hand hygiene before they walk in and make sure that they do the QR code.
“It’s pretty simple and then life can go on as it is.”
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