NSW Has Recorded Two Consecutive Days of Zero Locally Acquired COVID-19 Cases
But restrictions won't be eased until testing rates increase.
Twelve months ago, if you uttered the words 'doughnut day', you were probably using them in the literal sense between mouthfuls. Thanks to the chaos of 2020, however, the term now refers to a day without any new COVID-19 cases — and, when it comes to locally acquired cases, New South Wales has just notched two consecutive days of that milestone.
The state has been dealing with a rise of coronavirus numbers since before Christmas, starting in Sydney's northern beaches suburbs and now including clusters in the inner west and southwest. As a result, festive plans were thrown into disarray around not only NSW, but the entire country, as new restrictions on borders, gatherings and mask usage came into effect.
Today, Friday, January 15, NSW Health sent out its daily Tweet with yesterday's numbers and it's what we all want to see: a big fat zero. It's the second doughnut day in a row, too, with zero cases of community transmission also recorded on Thursday, January 14.
The bad news is that the city's restrictions won't be eased until testing rates increase. NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian didn't give an exact number, but said they are looking to "see the number two in front or even higher", so significantly more than the 16,070 conducted in the 24 hours leading up to 8pm last night. At the beginning of the northern beaches outbreak, upwards of 60,000 Sydneysiders were getting tested in a day.
NSW Health said in a Tweet that higher rates of testing were particularly important in Sydney's west, southwest and northern beaches, as well as Wollongong, because of recent cases who have been in these areas.
At the moment, Greater Sydney has strict limits on gatherings, with just five visitors allowed in homes and public outdoor gatherings capped at 30.
To keep an eye on the situation in Sydney, you can check out an interactive map that plots places that positive COVID-19 cases have visited, which takes data from the state's venue alerts. There's also a map that shows cases by postcode.
For more information about COVID-19 in NSW and current restrictions, head to NSW Health.
Published on January 15, 2021 by Samantha Teague