Covid’s horror day of records

Hazardous waste bins at Outlook Gardens aged care home. 212209_08 Picture: GARY SISSONS

By Cam Lucadou-Wells

During the state’s horror rise in daily Covid-19 cases, Greater Dandenong has recorded 14 new infections.

The council area now has 144 active cases, including 49 linked to Outlook Gardens aged-care home in Dandenong North.

Monash Health has taken over the running of the facility, evacuating at least 21 residents in the 95-bed home.

The home’s Covid-19 cluster grew by five overnight.

In the meantime, Victoria tallied a staggering new record of 723 new Covid-related cases and 13 deaths on 30 July.

In neighbouring Casey, there were 44 new cases overnight. Its active cases swelled to 223.

Cardinia’s new cases rose by 11.

There were single-figure rises in Monash (five), Kingston (five), Frankston (six) and Knox (six).

Outlook Gardens is one of four Melbourne private aged care homes now being managed by either the Commonwealth or state health networks.

The others are St Basil’s Home for the Aged in Fawkner, linked to 111 Covid-19 cases as of 30 July, Epping Gardens Aged Care (90) and Kirkbrae Presbyterian Homes in Kilsyth (81).

More than 200 aged-care residents had been transferred to public and private hospitals.

Aged care outbreaks, with 877 active cases and more than 100 new infections, was a significant factor in the record rise, Mr Andrews said.

Ten of the 13 deaths in the past 24 hours were thought to be linked to aged care.

They included six people in their seventies, five people in their eighties and two in their nineties.

The state’s Covid-19 death toll is now 105.

In hospital, there are 312 Covid-19 patients, including 34 in intensive care.

Mr Andrews identified workplace transmissions as another significant factor.

The daily numbers won’t fall until more people stopped going to work while Covid-positive or were sick and awaiting test results, he said.

Mr Andrews gave the example of Australian Defence Force doorknocking teams discovering a positive Covid-19 case had gone to work.

Other visited Covid-19 positive cases weren’t clear on their ‘stay-at-home’ obligations, Mr Andrews said.

“This is a test for all of us. This silent enemy will win if we let it get the better of us.

“Many more people will die and opening up will be only further away.”

Since last week, more than 1000 workers have been granted $300 to encourage them to stay home while awaiting test results.

The Government also offers $1500 for workers who test positive and were in insecure work without sick leave.


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