COVID-19 daily tests have doubled since criteria widened, but no new ACT cases detected

Genevieve Jacobs 22 May 2020 1
COVID-19 testing

COVID-19 testing rates have more than doubled since the criteria widened. Photo: File.

While there have been no new cases of COVID-19 recorded in the ACT in the past 18 days – and the confirmed total is still 107 – ACT Health says that tests have more than doubled since criteria were widened a month ago.

A total of 230 test results have been received in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of negative tests in the ACT to 15,146. The average number of tests per day is around 270, more than double the 100 tests being carried out before criteria were expanded.

“We have now tested over 15,000 Canberrans for COVID-19 which is a fantastic achievement,” ACT Chief Health Officer Dr Kerryn Coleman said.

“Testing remains the best way for us to know if COVID-19 is active in the community. If you’re feeling unwell, please get tested. Either call your general practitioner or present at one of the designated testing sites.”

Symptoms can vary between COVID-19 patients, but the most common can include fever, shortness of breath, sore throat and cough.

The sudden onset of loss of smell, loss of taste, runny nose, muscle pain, joint pain, diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite can also be an indicator of infection.

COVID-19 testing is available without an appointment at:

  • The Weston Creek Walk-in Centre (24 Parkinson St, Weston). Open 7:30 am to 10:00 pm daily, including public holidays. Please ensure you use a mask and hand sanitiser available at the front door.
  • The Drive Through Respiratory Assessment Clinic at Exhibition Park in Canberra (EPIC, Flemington Rd & Northbourne Ave, Mitchell). Open 9:30 am to 6:00 pm daily (last car accepted at 5:00 pm), including public holidays. You must be driving or be a passenger in a registered motor vehicle or motorbike to attend this clinic. It cannot be accessed from public transport or on foot.
  • Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health & Community Services (63 Boolimba Crescent, Narrabundah). Open 9:30 am to 4:30 pm Monday to Friday. The Winnunga Nimmityjah Respiratory Clinic provides a culturally appropriate assessment and testing centre for First Nations people and existing clients of Winnunga. Before visiting call ahead on 6284 6222 to let them know you think you may have COVID-19.

Laverty Pathology is also conducting COVID-19 testing in Canberra. Testing referrals must still be made by a doctor and patients will be notified by SMS if their tests are clear.

Laverty’s Canberra drive-through clinic is at the corner of Parkinson Street and Namatjira Drive in Weston and is open weekdays between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm. Patients will need to bring their referral, Medicare card and ID, and must remain in their cars at all times as nurses perform the test.

“We know people are eager to leave their homes and it is understandable that people want to get out and about; however, we must remember that it only takes one person with COVID-19 to come into contact with others to create a cluster and potentially start a new wave of COVID-19,” Dr Coleman said.

“We don’t want to go backwards so it is important people don’t become complacent or careless with their actions. Staying at home as much as possible and avoiding large crowds is still the best way to protect yourself, and your family, from any potential risk of infection”.

Canberrans are still required to avoid large crowds, gathering in groups of no more than 10 people; keep 1.5 metres apart whenever possible; continue good hand and respiratory hygiene; stay home if you are unwell and get tested if you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.

The ACT Government has established a dedicated COVID-19 website for all information about the health and economic response to the pandemic in the ACT. For further information visit www.covid19.act.gov.au.

The ACT Government has also established a helpline to assist Canberrans through the challenges of COVID-19. The COVID-19 Helpline is 02 6207 7244 and opens between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm daily.

People who are concerned and want further information on the virus, can also call the Australian Government’s Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.


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One Response to COVID-19 daily tests have doubled since criteria widened, but no new ACT cases detected
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Acton Acton 7:55 am 23 May 20

Pandemic or panpanic? No deaths, no new cases and all recovered. But still some people use fear and paranoia to justify restricting and controlling others. Maybe they are enjoying it.

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