24 Jul 2021

Covid-19 update: 163 new cases in New South Wales today

1:30 pm on 24 July 2021

The number of community cases in New South Wales continues to rise, with 163 new cases of Covid-19 reported in New South Wales today.

Health workers collect swab samples from residents at a Covid-19 drive-through testing clinic in Sydney's Fairfield suburb on July 14, 2021.

Health workers collect swab samples from residents at a Covid-19 drive-through testing clinic in Sydney's Fairfield suburb earlier this month. Photo: AFP

Of the new cases, 45 were out in the community while infectious, 87 are linked to a known case or cluster - 62 are household contacts and 25 are close contacts - and the source of infection for 76 cases is under investigation.

Seventy-three cases were in isolation throughout their infectious period and 26 cases were in isolation for part of their infectious period.

Yesterday NSW announced that it had recorded 136 new Covid-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Thursday.

Today's figure was the highest number of daily new infections in the Australian state since the Delta outbreak began last month.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard reiterated the state's stay at home message.

He said family members mingling with other households will "continue to cause massive grief here in Sydney" if people don't adhere to the rules.

"I think the basic message out of all of this is that the community - we really need our community, particularly in south-western... Sydney, to stay at home, to hear the message and stay at home," he said.

"And don't intermingle with family members from other households. It will continue to cause massive grief here in Sydney, particularly in western and south-western Sydney, if family members mix with family members from other households."

Hazzard said fines and penalties were "one small part of what has to occur".

But he said people needed to understand that "the most dangerous thing you can do in a pandemic is to be near another human being".

"Now, we all need to do that. That is an essential human need. But we also have to recognise that this virus can only get from one person to another when we're relatively close to each other," he said.

"So if we can just stay in our own households - it has been across the world that every government has struggled to get this message through to various sections of the community, but I think - and I ask the media to help us in that, to focus on that, and try and get the message out to the community, and also to get vaccinated."

12 new cases in Victoria

Victoria has recorded 12 new locally acquired cases of Covid-19, as the state enters hopefully what will be the final weekend of its fifth lockdown.

The cases are all linked to the current outbreak.

Victoria's health department has confirmed that 10 of the 12 cases were in quarantine throughout their entire infectious period, with just two cases infectious while in the community.

Victorians are being urged to check the growing list of exposure sites in the state, after officials added another 400 sites overnight, mostly in Melbourne's city centre and inner east.

In the wake of New South Wales' climbing Covid-19 case numbers, Victoria's chief health officer has toughened up Victoria's hard border with the state by upgrading the state's travel permit system.

The change came into effect at midnight last night, with New South Wales declared an "extreme risk zone".

It means those entering Victoria under that classification without an exemption will be put on a return flight or placed into 14 days mandatory hotel quarantine.

There are 169 active cases of Covid-19 in the state.

There were 39,846 test results received on Friday, with 19,281 vaccine doses administered.

A man walks past a Covid-19 vaccination centre in Melbourne.

A man walks past a Covid-19 vaccination centre in Melbourne. Photo: AFP

Huge demand for testing in South Australia

A further two coronavirus testing sites will open in the state this weekend to help authorities cope with massive demand.

Over the past week, some have waited in Covid-19 testing queues for more than 10 hours before being turned away because clinics were due to shut at the end of business hours.

Only one locally acquired case of Covid-19 was recorded yesterday.

No new community cases in Queensland

Queensland has recorded no new locally acquired Covid-19 cases today, although contract tracing will continue amid an alert involving a flight attendant.

The Brisbane woman in her thirties tested positive on Thursday and she was potentially infectious while working on QantasLink flights to-and-from Longreach, Gladstone and Hervey Bay on 11-12 July.

The woman has the Delta strain, circulating in Sydney.

While the exact source of her infection isn't known, authorities say she had been on board some regional routes into New South Wales.


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