9 September 2022

Territory records 137 new COVID cases; reduced isolation periods come info effect

| Lottie Twyford
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Positive COVID-19 cases are now only required to isolate for five days instead of seven. Photo: Canberra Health Services.

The Territory has recorded 137 (55 PCR and 82 RAT) COVID-9 infections in the 24 hours to 8 pm last night, and reduced isolation periods have come into effect.

At the last National Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, 31 August, state and territory leaders agreed to change the isolation period for positive COVID-19 cases from seven to five days.

People are only allowed to leave isolation if they are symptom-free. Otherwise, ACT Health asks that people remain at home and avoid contact with others.

Mask-wearing in indoor spaces is mandatory for the two days after leaving isolation, and people cannot enter a high-risk setting such as a hospital or aged care facility or work in a care facility.

These requirements do not apply if you are a resident of a facility, have prior approval or require urgent care.

The requirement to wear masks on international flights arriving in Australia and on domestic flights has also been scrapped.

Masks remain mandatory in the Territory in high-risk settings, public transport, taxi and rideshare, and some government buildings.

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Today is also the last day ACT Health will be providing a daily COVID-19 case update. From next Friday (16 September), the health directorate will instead publish a weekly case update.

That will include updates on case numbers, deaths, hospitalisations and vaccination data.

Health will also continue to publish a weekly epidemiological report, which it has done since April. This contains data about total caseloads, vaccination data of deaths and hospitalisations, and testing rates.

This was determined at a meeting of health ministers last Friday but was only made public on Wednesday (7 September).

“Weekly reporting will allow the public to stay informed about the level of COVID in the ACT and the impacts it is having on our health system and society more broadly,” Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said.

“Of course, if there are any developments of concern, the government will alert the community.”

In the week from Monday, 29 August to Sunday, 4 September, covered by Health’s most recent epidemiological report, the ACT recorded 1209 new COVID-19 cases – the lowest number of weekly cases recorded in the ACT all year.

Of those, 8.4 per cent (102/1209) were reinfections.

The rolling case mean was 160 to 200 cases a day. Of the 8060 tests conducted in the week, the test-positivity rolling mean was 9 per cent.

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There are now 594 known active infections in the Territory, and 203,680 cases have been reported since March 2020.

Hospitalisations remain steady. There are 86 people in hospital with the virus, with one person in the ICU. No one requires ventilation.

Yesterday, there were 87 people in hospital with the virus, with one in the ICU requiring ventilation.

Of the Territory’s five to 15 population, 77.8 per cent have received two doses of vaccine; 78.1 per cent of those aged 16 and over have received three doses; 58.1 per cent of those aged 50 and over have received four doses.

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Interstate, NSW has published its first weekly report.

In the seven days to 4 pm on Thursday, 8 September, the state reported 119 deaths and 21,711 new cases of COVID-19.

There are now 1503 people in hospital with the virus and 27 patients in ICUs around the state.

The state’s health department said it is notified of COVID-19-related deaths from various sources, and there is sometimes a delay between a death occurring and it being notified to NSW Health.

Victoria has recorded 41 deaths overnight and 2106 cases of COVID-19.

There are 213 people hospitalised with the virus and 13 patients in the state’s intensive care units.

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