Bendigo's COVID-19 cases down as self-isolation and repeat testing reaps benefits

Bendigo Health chairman Bob Cameron. Picture: DARREN HOWE.
Bendigo Health chairman Bob Cameron. Picture: DARREN HOWE.

The past week has seen more people in Bendigo self-isolating and the results are telling.

Bendigo Health chairman Bob Cameron said the health service is seeing "very small amounts of community transmission.

"That is great news," Mr Cameron said.

"We have really seen an improvement in the behaviour of the community in the past week.

"People are taking seriously the importance of self-isolating if they have had a test or have been asked to."

Mr Cameron said household transmission is now a cause of concern and that anyone who receives a positive test, should self-isolate for two weeks.

"We have the contact tracing team up and going, we trace quickly, contain and aim to eliminate," he said.

The cluster of cases from Lockwood's Hazeldene's Chicken Farm is 30, with a second round of testing underway among that workforce.

"People were tested initially and some tested positive," Mr Cameron said. "On day 11, they are tested again.

"We are halfway through that and six workers tested positive on day 11 who were not positive at the start."

Mr Cameron explained that the six workers who tested positive on day 11 most likely did not have enough virus in their bodies to trigger an initial positive test.

"The person doesn't know it, but they are carrying coronavirus," he said. "They will get it to the extent they are capable of spreading it and when it comes to day 11, they will be detected."

Premier Daniel Andrews today revealed the number of active cases in Greater Bendigo reduced from 49 to 47 in the past 24 hours.

During his daily press conference, Mr Andrews said it was encouraging that regional case numbers were decreasing.

"People living in Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong, please come forward and be tested even if you have very mild symptoms," Mr Andrews said.

"Given that we have so little flu in Victoria, if you've got symptoms, even very mild symptoms, there's every chance you've got this."

Victoria has recorded 25 deaths from COVID-19, and 282 new cases of the virus.

Twenty two of the 25 fatalities announced on Monday are linked to aged care outbreaks, Mr Andrews said.

There are 44 Victorians receiving intensive care treatment, of which 32 are on ventilators.

One patient is being treated in intensive care at Bendigo Hospital, but it was not disclosed if they require a ventilator.

This story Self-isolation helps drive down city's COVID-19 community transmission first appeared on Bendigo Advertiser.