Five million Melburnians have spent their first night under a citywide, coronavirus-enforced curfew that will last the next six weeks.
Premier Daniel Andrews on Sunday announced a suite of tough new COVID-19 regulations designed to limit movement in Melbourne, while foreshadowing more to come for workplaces.
New South Wales
Why NSW has so far avoided Victoria’s crisis and the failures seen in the US:
It feels a long time since Sydney was the epicentre of Australia’s coronavirus pandemic.
John Kaldor, professor of epidemiology at the Kirby Institute at the University of NSW, said NSW has “a very substantial and effective” contact tracing team in place, which is helping stem the pandemic.
“They are detecting a steady amount of cases but so far the vast majority of those cases are linked to known outbreaks and they are picking them up in pretty good time,” Prof. Kaldor said.
“The number of mystery cases is still very small.”
He said daily case numbers need to be unpacked, as it was the mystery transmission cases which cannot be linked to known cases which represented the greatest risk.
Even a freshly reported linked case could be someone already in quarantine, he said, meaning that person has not been out in public potentially infecting others.
Currently, around 10 per cent of NSW daily reported cases are people infected from an unknown source.
Yet despite this low number, Prof. Kaldor said the situation in NSW remains “a concern” because the virus is so infectious.
If you have too many cases that can’t be traced, you end up like Victoria and the US.
With proper leadership you can get the numbers down to zero community transmission: