Aged care residents among 16 new NSW cases

·3-min read

Three aged care residents at a northwest Sydney facility have caught COVID-19 from an infected staff member, with at least 140 employees now in self-isolation.

All three of the SummitCare Baulkham Hills residents - a man in his 90s, a man in his 80s and a woman in her 80s - were fully vaccinated against the virus and are asymptomatic, and all three have been sent to Westmead Hospital as a precaution.

All other tests on workers and staff at the Baulkham Hills facility have returned negative so far and the site is in full lockdown, with surge capacity staff on deck.

SummitCare chief operating officer Michelle Sloane told reporters on Sunday at least 140 of the facility's 200 staff members are now in 14 days of self-isolation. About a third of the facility's total workforce had received a COVID-19 vaccine.

Ms Sloane also said the facility's staff were not working shifts at other aged care venues.

"We always knew that if we had a case in one of our homes, we planned for it with our pandemic planning and we knew we'd lose at least 50 per cent of our staff," she said.

"We've just been the unlucky ones to get (the virus)."

NSW recorded 16 local COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday, with three cases out in the community during some or all of their infectious period. There have now been 277 local COVID-19 cases reported since June 16.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the dip in case numbers was a good sign, as was the decreasing number of people in the community while infectious.

She reiterated all people in Greater Sydney and surrounds must adhere to lockdown provisions, which will remain in place until at least Friday, and reiterated it was too soon to tell whether the lockdown would be extended.

"We are seeing numbers going the right way but I do say cautiously that number can still bounce around," Ms Berejiklian told reporters on Sunday.

"To keep that trend going, we need to make sure people don't give in and don't break those rules we've put in place ... they're there for a reason."

NSW Police handed out 86 infringement notices on Saturday for breaching stay-at-home rules.

Authorities listed a string of new exposure sites across Sydney over the weekend, showing the outbreak's epicentre is shifting from the city's east to the western suburbs.

Anyone who has been in the centre of Auburn since June 27 is being told to get tested, even if they don't have symptoms.

New close-contact exposure sites were announced late on Saturday at Hop Hung Asian Grocery in Lakemba on June 30 and Strathfield Plaza Medical Practice on July 1.

On Sunday, NSW Health said anyone who attended the Commonwealth Bank at Roselands Shopping Centre on June 28, 29 and 30 is also a virus close contact.

Further warnings were issued for a Five Dock butcher on June 29 and Revesby bathroom supply store on June 26, while all passengers on flight VA524 from Gold Coast to Sydney on June 26 are now deemed close contacts and must isolate.

Meanwhile NSW has lifted stay-at-home orders for travellers from Western Australia, the Northern Territory and parts of Queensland as restrictions in those states and territories ease.

NSW Labor health spokesman Ryan Park on Sunday said in a statement the government should incentivise COVID-19 vaccination by offering additional "Dine and Discover" hospitality vouchers to those who get the jab.

The government has previously said supply issues, rather than a lack of demand, are to blame for low vaccination coverage.

Five COVID-19 patients in NSW are currently in intensive care.

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