A new COVID-19 case in NSW visited multiple locations around Sydney, including a pharmacy that had to send all staff for testing
NSW has recorded two new locally acquired COVID-19 infections, with urgent investigations and contact tracing underway.
The first case was a man from Sydney’s eastern suburbs, in his 50s, who returned a positive result for COVID-19 early on Wednesday 5 May.
He was found to have visited multiple locations around Sydney between Saturday 1 May and Tuesday 4 May while potentially infectious.
These included four BBQ stores, four eateries, a butcher shop, a movie screening at Event Cinemas in Bondi Junction Westfield, an optometrist, The Royal Sydney Golf Club, a rug wash business, and two furniture stores.
He also visited the Chemist Warehouse in Double Bay on Tuesday 4 May, between 3.45pm and 4pm, followed by the local Woolworths directly afterwards until 4.15pm.
Anyone who attended the pharmacy during that time is now considered a casual contact, based on latest NSW Health advice.
They must immediately get tested and self-isolate until a negative result is received. They should continue to monitor for symptoms and if they appear, isolate and get tested again.
This is an update from the original advice which initially stated that anyone at the pharmacy during that time was a close contact.
Chemist Warehouse Double Bay told AJP it had been following all of the NSW Health guidelines to ensure the exposure was contained.
“We did a deep cleaning and sent all of our staff for testing,” pharmacist manager Melissa said.
A new team had to be brought in to replace those that were in isolation following testing.
The wife of the man has also returned a positive test. NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said they believed she had been picked up very early in her infectious period.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said NSW Health was able to detect the original source of the infection by undertaking genomic testing to verify the strain.
The sequence matched with an overseas case who had travelled from the US and gone into hotel quarantine, said Dr Chant.
However she said they are concerned there is a missing link – an unidentified person – because there is no direct contact established yet between the Australian case and the US case. Their investigations are continuing.
As a result of these findings, Ms Berejiklian has introduced a range of new restrictions enforceable from 5pm on Friday 6 May until 12:01am Monday, 10 May.
Restrictions include limits on visitors to households to 20 guests (including children), compulsory masks on public transport and in all public indoor venues, and limits on visitors to aged care facilities to two people, among others.
NSW Health has also been notified that fragments of SARS-CoV-2 have been detected in the Marrickville Sewage Network.
This catchment includes about 42,000 people and takes sewage from the following suburbs: Dulwich Hill, Marrickville, Summer Hill, Lewisham, Ashfield, Haberfield, Petersham, Lilyfield and Leichhardt.
NSW Health is asking everyone in these areas to be especially vigilant in monitoring for symptoms.
It urges everyone in the state with even the mildest symptoms, such as headache, fatigue, cough, sore throat or runny nose, to get tested.