Thursday, August 18, 2022
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ACT records 17 new cases, 12 now in hospital

The ACT has recorded 17 new cases overnight, with nine linked to existing clusters – all are household contacts. The remaining eight new cases are under early investigation.

Only one was in quarantine for their entire infectious period, and at least 11 were infectious in the community.

“It’s important to remember that we’re still interviewing the remaining five,” ACT Deputy Chief Health Officer Dr Vanessa Johnston said.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr said the potential risk given the high percentage of the ACT’s 17 new cases who had spent time in the community while infectious was “of concern”.

Twelve people are now in hospital with or due to COVID-19. Two are in ICU, both requiring ventilation. Neither of the cases requiring ventilation are fully vaccinated.

Of the total 12, seven are unvaccinated, two have received one dose, one is fully vaccinated and the status of two are unknown.

The youngest patient is under 12 and the oldest is in their 90s.

The total cases for this outbreak now stands at 658. There are 232 active cases and the total number of recovered cases is 426, 22 more than yesterday.

There are now only three active sites of transmission: Busy Bee’s childcare, Bidfood Canberra and Ainslie Village.

KFC Dickson, Priceline Pharmacy Woden, Mirchi Indian restaurant and Bright Bee’s early learning centre have all been removed as there has been no ongoing transmission at these sites for over 14 days.

A total of 1,988 people came forward for testing yesterday, a number the Chief Minister said is “too low”.

“We’ve had too many people waiting days and days with symptoms before coming forward,” Mr Barr said.

A little over 81 per cent of the ACT’s eligible population have now received at least one dose.

Based on the forward bookings for people under 40, Mr Barr said the numbers are now on track to exceed 95 per cent of the ACT’s population.

Around 56 per cent of the ACT population are fully vaccinated.

The Chief Minister reported that business compliance remains good, but is consistently struggling in respect to mask wearing by employees at business sites.

“Our compliance teams will continue that focus,” he said.

“Those who have already been reminded will not be shown the courtesy of further reminders on this point.

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