20 July 2020

UPDATED: No new COVID-19 cases in the ACT, rain closes Garran Oval drive-through testing

| Dominic Giannini
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COVID-19 testing

The drive-through testing centre at Garran Oval is closed today; however, centres at West Belconnen and EPIC remain open to motorists. Photo: ACT Health.

No new cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the ACT, marking the third day in a row since the Territory’s last positive case. Five active cases linked to the Victorian outbreak remain in the ACT.

ACT Health has also warned anyone who was at the Crossroads Hotel in Casula between 3 and 10 July 2020 to immediately self-isolate after a cluster of cases emerged from the Sydney pub. Anyone who visited the hotel is also being encouraged to get tested, regardless of whether they are showing symptoms.

The updated testing advice came just hours after Canberra Health Services said the drive-through testing clinic at the Garran Oval pop-up emergency department would be closed today because of rain. Walk-in testing is still available.

The Garran Oval ED was converted into a testing centre over the weekend due to the increased demand of Canberrans presenting themselves for testing after the Territory recorded its first COVID-19 cases in over a month last week. The walk-in centre at Garran saw 150 presentations over the weekend, while more than 1050 people presented themselves for testing across the Garran, EPIC and Weston Creek sites, ACT Health said.

The Garran ED drive-through option was set to open this morning before Canberra Health Services announced it would be delayed due to today’s weather forecast.

The West Belconnen COVID-19 testing clinic in Kippax is open from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Motorists are reminded that entry is from Start Street only. Around 50 people had already presented themselves by midday Monday, ACT Health said.

Almost 2,000 negative tests were returned over the weekend, while more than 600 negative results were returned today, bringing the ACT’s total negative tests to 37,200 as of midday Monday.

Canberrans returning from Victoria must now apply for an exemption to return to the ACT and then self-isolate for 14-days upon arrival. ACT Health says all Territorians will be able to return but must notify ACT Health first.

Victorians are banned from entering the ACT without a valid exemption. Around 800 requests for an exemption – the majority of whom are returning Canberrans – were submitted by Monday, Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said.

All but 70 have been processed so far. Four hundred Canberrans remain in self-isolation after returning. Residents are also being reminded that they should not be travelling to Victoria.

Returning residents can apply for an exemption to travel to the ACT from Victoria at www.covid19.act.gov.au/exemption-application.

To notify ACT Health of your intention to return, to apply for an exemption or to find out more about our border restrictions, visit covid19.act.gov.au, email covid.exemptions@act.gov.au or phone the COVID-19 Helpline on 02 6207 7244.

For more information on the legal requirements for quarantine and for information for travellers entering the ACT, visit https://www.covid19.act.gov.au/news-articles/act-border-restrictions.

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