teams across the country are on edge as they closely monitor new outbreaks that threatening major cities.
Even as COVID-19 cases continue to broadly trend downwards across Australia, the threat remains that new clusters could spread out of control.
Peninsula Health in Frankston, in Melbourne’s south-east, is the epicentre of the largest cluster causing nightmares for track-and-trace teams, growing yesterday to 63 cases as more than 600 staff are forced to isolate at home.
The outbreak was discovered last week. A Peninsula Health video posted online claimed the hospital was in its “final stages” of investigations.
“We have further strengthened our infection prevention measures. As such, we are casting a very wide net on our contact tracing process resulting in the furloughing of 618 staff,” it said.
It’s the latest blow to Victoria’s beleaguered COVID-19 response processes, following a new lockdown and outbreaks in aged care homes.
The Australian Medical Association also described the state’s handling of the second wave as a “slow car crash”.
Victorian President Associate Professor Julian Rait said he was concerned by the Frankston Hospital outbreak.
“It remains to be explained as to how this infection spread so far within the hospital and its other facilities,” he said.
Critical departments, including emergency, continue to operate, while several other wards have been closed.
An aerial view of Melbourne CBD, in Victoria. The Australian Medical Association also described the state’s handling of the second wave as a “slow car crash”. (Getty)
The threat of hotspots plagues authorities across multiple states.
NSW reported nine new coronavirus cases yesterday, five of them linked to a cluster in the CBD.
Three of the new cases are from the Sydney CBD Tattersalls gym, taking its total to eight.
People who visited certain gyms, hotels and even churches have been urged to get tested after potential close contacts with a positive case.
Queensland health authorities continue to track down potential contacts linked to the Brisbane Youth Detention Centre outbreak.
A Bunnings store, a pet shop and a Woolworths are among new locations which have been added to a list of places visited by people with COVID-19 in the past fortnight in Queensland.
And prisons through the state are in lockdown after a Queensland Corrective Services trainer tested positive.
The trainer was possibly infectious while training 14 recruits