14 June 2022

ACT records 633 new COVID cases; Health warns of undiagnosed community infections

| Lottie Twyford
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Namadgi School

Students in Years 9 and 10 at Namadgi School will be learning remotely until 17 June. Photo: File.

ACT Health has reported 633 new COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8 pm yesterday and the directorate’s latest weekly snapshot of the pandemic warns of high rates of undiagnosed cases in the community.

Daily hospitalisations have hit an equal record high, with 93 COVID-19 patients being cared for in the Territory’s hospitals.

It comes as multiple ACT public schools continue to send cohorts of students off-campus as pandemic-related staff shortages make keeping all students on campus impractical.

Students in Years 3 to 6 at Fraser Primary School, Years 5 and 6 at Harrison School and Year 3 at Amaroo School are undertaking their last day of remote learning today.

However, students at Fraser won’t return to campus until Thursday (16 June) as tomorrow is a school staff planning day.

Year 9 and 10 students at Gold Creek School will learn from home until tomorrow (15 June). Their peers in Years 9 and 10 at Namadgi School will also learn from home for the rest of this week (until Friday, 17 June) after remote learning was extended for that group.

Students in P to K at Southern Cross Early Childhood School will also be at home for the rest of this week.

COVID-19 testing

ACT Health said a high test positivity rate indicates high rates of undiagnosed cases of COVID-19 in the community. Photo: ACT Health.

In the week-ending Sunday, 5 June, both case numbers and the number of PCR tests conducted declined – the latter from almost 14,000 in the previous week to 11,756 in this reporting period.

But Health said test positivity for PCR results remained high (22 to 23 per cent), which they say indicates “undiagnosed cases in the community”.

The directorate made a similar observation in its previous weekly report.

It is impossible to measure test positivity rates for rapid antigen tests as people are not required to report a negative test result.

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Throughout the week, 4974 cases were reported, compared to 5429 in the week prior, and the seven-day rolling mean decreased from 750 to 850 cases a day to 650 to 750.

The only age group to record an increase in cases in the week was the 25 to 39 age group. This population accounts for almost one-third of all cases.

The number of Canberrans who have reported multiple COVID-19 infections since March 2020 has risen to 828. Almost 80 per cent of these people had their first positive test after December 2021.

It was also the first week the ACT has sequenced a recombinant variant in an interstate traveller – a possible BA.1/BA.2.

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The 633 COVID-19 cases (287 PCR and 346 RAT) overnight take the total number of active infections in the Territory to 4201 (2197 PCR and 2004 RAT).

A total of 141,660 (85,806 PCR and 55,854 RAT) COVID-19 cases have been recorded since the pandemic began in March 2020.

On Sunday, 643 new cases of COVID-19 were reported.

Of the 93 people now hospitalised with the virus, three are in the ICU and one requires ventilation.

Yesterday, 80 people were hospitalised with the virus and two people required intensive care.

The double-dose vaccination rate for the ACT’s five-plus population remains 97.3 per cent and 76.9 per cent of residents aged 16 and older have received a booster.

Of ACT residents aged five to 11, 68.4 per cent have received two doses of vaccine.

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Interstate, NSW has reported three deaths overnight and 5157 new cases of COVID-19.

There are now 1341 people in hospital with the virus and 39 people in ICUs around the state.

Victoria has reported 15 deaths overnight and 6071 cases of COVID-19.

There are now 473 people hospitalised with the virus, while 28 patients are in the state’s intensive care unit.

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