Lismore in regional NSW goes into lockdown as state records 667 COVID-19 cases

A seven-day snap lockdown in Lismore takes effect from midnight on 3 October, a week after COVID-19 transmission was uncovered in the area.

A QR code check-in point outside the Sonic Healthcare COVID-19 vaccination hub in the Sydney CBD on 23 September 2021.

A QR code check-in point outside the Sonic Healthcare COVID-19 vaccination hub in the Sydney CBD on 23 September 2021. Source: AAP

NSW Health has announced a snap lockdown will commence in the Lismore Local Government Area from midnight Sunday "due to an increased COVID-19 public health risk".

The stay-at-home orders will apply for seven days until 11 October 2021.

NSW Health said it is closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 in Cowra, Muswellbrook and Port Macquarie with further announcements to be made on Monday.

Meanwhile, the NSW government has outlined its health advice, rules and penalties for when the state reopens at the 70 per cent double dose vaccination target.

Across the state, 88.1 per cent of people aged 16 and over have received a first vaccine, and 66.5 per cent were fully vaccinated by midnight on Friday.

Businesses will be responsible for taking "reasonable measures to stop unvaccinated people entering premises" such as having prominent signs, QR code requirements and only accepting valid proof of vaccination.

Hospitality, retail, gyms, hairdressers and beauty salons will be monitored by authorised officers and on-the-spot fines of $1,000 will apply to individuals who do not comply or use fraudulent vaccination records.

Businesses may be fined $5,000 for breaching the rules.

Under the advice, which may change as case numbers and evidence does, vaccinated close contacts of a positive case must get tested, isolate for seven days, get tested again on the sixth day and, if negative, can end isolation after day seven.

They must work from home for the week where possible and not attend hospitality or high-risk settings, even if it is their place of work.

Unvaccinated close contacts of a positive case must get tested and isolate for 14 days, get tested again at 12 days and if a negative result is received isolation can end after the fortnight.

Everyone, vaccinated or unvaccinated, with COVID-19 symptoms has been urged to get tested and self-isolate.

Those who test positive must still isolate for 14 days.

Case tally dips below 700

NSW on Sunday reported 667 new locally acquired cases and 10 deaths, the first time daily case numbers have been below 700 since August 19.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard warned people to be careful and respect restrictions while enjoying the NRL grand final to prevent super-spreader events.

"You shouldn't be having people at home," he told reporters.

"Your home remains one of the most dangerous places to be in terms of transmission of the virus."

Fans take a photos in front of a home covered in South Sydney Rabbitohs signage in the suburb of Waterloo
Source: AAP

Although the rugby league decider is being held out of state in Queensland for the first time, Sydney fans will be buoyed by having two local teams contesting the event - South Sydney and Penrith.

Of the 10 deaths in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday, four people were not vaccinated, four had received one dose and two were fully vaccinated.

The deaths take the toll for the current outbreak to 372.

Child in ICU

There are 981 COVID-19 patients in hospital in NSW, with 195 in intensive care units and 93 on ventilators.

Mr Hazzard said a child aged between zero and nine was in ICU, as were three people aged between 10 and 19.

He said the resignation of Gladys Berejiklian did not change the roadmap out of lockdown for NSW.

"She has been absolutely critical to the team," Mr Hazzard said.

"But that doesn't mean the health team and the rest of the government won't continue to do what we need to do."

There were 88,210 tests conducted to 8pm on Saturday, compared with the previous day's total of 98,266.

NSW Health has detected virus fragments in sewage at Tweed Kingscliff and Tweed Banora Point in northern NSW.

Casino is in lockdown, with stay-at-home orders applicable to anyone who has visited the northern NSW town since September 24.

Meanwhile, non-urgent day surgery will restart in NSW private health facilities on Tuesday as transmission rates continue to fall. However, non-urgent procedures at NSW public hospitals will remain postponed.

Published 3 October 2021 at 7:54am, updated 3 October 2021 at 7:56pm
Source: AAP - SBS