Date published: 
15 October 2020
Media type: 
Transcript
Audience: 
General public

NATALIE BARR:

In more breaking news, the Victorian coronavirus figures have just been released. The state recorded just six new infections in the past 24 hours, and more good news, no lives were lost. It brings Melbourne's 14-day rolling average down to 8.9. Meantime, there are fears Sydney could be on the verge of another big coronavirus outbreak with 11 cases of community transmission in the city, nine linked to the Lakemba GP cluster. Joining me now is Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Michael Kidd. Morning to you. How concerned are you about the rise of community transmissions in Sydney and will testing be enough to control this outbreak?

MICHAEL KIDD:

Yeah, good morning, Nat. Yes, we are concerned about what's happening in Sydney. The positive part of what we're seeing in Sydney is the very active public response to these outbreaks. The fact that of the 11 cases of locally acquired COVID-19, yesterday, 10 of them were people where they were already known contacts of people who'd previously been diagnosed with COVID-19. So that is positive. That shows that the public health response is working. People are being alerted when they may have been in contact with someone with COVID-19, going into isolation, getting tested.

NATALIE BARR:

So, there've been three new cases in regional Victoria. This truck driver accused the virus. He went from Melbourne to Shepparton, he lied to authorities about this travels, apparently. What do you to say to people who are worried about coming forward?

MICHAEL KIDD:

Look, it's absolutely essential in a public health emergency, as we are living through at the moment, that people are honest with the public health authorities, with the contact tracers. That you tell them all they need to know in order to be able to follow-up with other people and prevent the further spread of this potentially deadly virus. So please, if you are contacted by the contact tracers, tell them the truth, tell them everything that you've been doing. If afterwards you realise you've forgotten something, get in contact with them and let them know. Doing so may well save the lives of other people.

NATALIE BARR:

Now, the push is on to fill the Gabba for the AFL Grand Final. Current capacity is capped at 30,000; authorities are keen to lift that to 40,000. What do you think?

MICHAEL KIDD:

Look, I think this is an issue obviously for the Queensland health authorities. And what needs to take place is that the Gabba is a COVID-safe venue. We have seen in the past that a number of our venues have been able to be made COVID-safe by having ticketed events, knowing everyone who was going into the venue, having appropriate physical distancing between family groups which are attending events. So, let's let the Queensland health authorities do their job and make sure this remains a COVID-safe Grand Final.

NATALIE BARR:

Michael Kidd, thanks for your time.

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