Covid-19: South East ‘concerns’

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton is concerned by positive case numbers in Casey and Greater Dandenong.

By Cam Lucadou-Wells

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer has identified Greater Dandenong and Casey as Covid-19 hotspots due to a rising proportion of positive tests.

Brett Sutton told a media conference on 2 September that the council areas – along with the “usual suspects” such as Wyndham, Brimbank and Hume – were “more of a concern in recent days”.

There’d be also a push to lift the consistently low testing rates in the region, he said.

According to Department of Health and Human Services data, Casey (1.1 per cent) and Greater Dandenong (1.5 per cent) have about double the positive test rate than the state average (0.62 per cent).

They are about double the state’s positive test rate of 0.62 per cent.

In the past week of stage-4 lockdowns, there’s been 50 new cases in Casey and 36 in Greater Dandenong. In the same period, active cases have dropped by 19 and 18 respectively.

As of 2 September, there are 130 active cases in Casey and 92 in Greater Dandenong.

Last week, police arrested 10 people and issued 72 fines during anti-lockdown gatherings of up to 80 people a day in Dandenong South.

Professor Sutton said there continued to be transmissions in aged care, Peninsula Health and high-risk workplaces.

Known aged care clusters have been recorded at Outlook Gardens (115 cases), Estia Health Keysborough (20) and Mercy Place Dandenong (at least 21).

An ongoing outbreak of 45 cases has also been linked to Dandenong South truck manufacturer Vawdrey Australia.

Monash Health spokesperson Rhonda Stewart told ABC Melbourne Radio that test numbers were “slightly down”.

They mirrored the drop in cases and peoples’ possible complacency toward testing.

Ms Stewart said it was important for symptomatic people to get tested. It helped halt the spread of Covid-19 along with self-isolation and contact tracing.

Statewide, there were 113 new Covid-19 cases and 15 deaths in the past 24 hours.


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