Wednesday, October 20, 2021
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Sydneysiders turn out in force for jabs

Sydney’s CBD appeared nearly empty today as the state begins its first week in lockdown with 18 new cases recorded overnight.

All but one of the new cases have been linked to existing infections, with the Bondi cluster now sitting at 124.

There were nearly 59,000 people tested for the virus in the 24 hours to 8pm yesterday.

While thousands stayed indoors to work from home under the state’s new lockdown rules, queues were spotted at Sydney’s mass vaccination centre.

Authorities are encouraging people to continue to get their vaccinations amid the stay-at-home order provided they wear a mask and are not experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.

The one unlinked case was in the “vicinity” of other positive cases, Premier Gladys Berejiklian said.

“I want to stress that of those 18 cases, about six of them were in isolation for the entire time,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“A number of them were in isolation for part of the time but some, unfortunately, were active in the community.”

Among today’s cases are two students from South Coogee Public School.

These students are close contacts of two previously reported cases at the school, bringing the total number of students with COVID-19 at South Coogee Public School to four.

“Because there are interactions between school groups in different year groups, all students are now close contacts and must get tested and self-isolate for 14 days regardless of a negative test,” Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said.

Dr Chant warned COVID-19 numbers will “bounce around”, echoing the premier’s comments.

“We will need at least another five days to see this picture turn around,” she said.

Dr Chant also stressed the highly contagious nature of the Delta strain, with household transmission rates up by 70 per cent.

“In the past, for some of the early strains, we would see perhaps a household attack rate of around 30 per cent,” she said.

“And as I said, the minister’s indicated we’re seeing upward of almost 100 per cent in the households.”

A number of venues have been identified as causing particular concern as staff and patrons continue to test positive.

Dr Chant noted the Lyfe Cafe in Bondi, the Joh Bailey Hairdresser in Double Bay, Great Ocean Foods in Marrickville and The Royal Bondi as locations being monitored closely by authorities.

Ms Berejiklian has urged locked-down Sydneysiders to avoid contact with others as much as possible.

“We encourage people, if you are ordering in food, keep the order contactless,” she said.

“While you are allowed to go out and get essential services and food items, we are keen to not have people move around.

“That is the effect of the lockdown, it helps when people don’t move around.

“Please don’t go around picking up things or delivering things unless you absolutely have to do.”

Of the dozens of people who attended a West Hoxton party early in the outbreak, seven had received the COVID-19 jab – and none of those have been infected, Health Minister Brad Hazzard has revealed.

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