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Friday, 18 December 2020

Covid-19 outbreak in our area

We live in the Northern Beaches region of Sydney, but not particularly close to the Avalon suburb where the latest 'outbreak' of Covid-19 has occurred over the past two days. We've gone from living in a State that has gone from having zero locally acquired cases for about two months, to having 28 cases diagnosed in just the past two days, all apparently coming from an overseas case escaping the quarantine process on 11 December. Compared to the US and most of the world Australia is still the 'lucky country' in relation to how this pandemic is going (more due to geographic isolation and good public policy and execution of enforcement measures than 'luck' though), but this incident reinforces just how infectious Covid-19 is, and that you can't really relax mitigation measures such as mask-wearing in public and social distancing even when there have been no known local cases for more than a month. Things can't get back to 'business as normal' until 90% of the population has been vaccinated (which isn't likely to be completed until late next year).

There has been a good response to government requests for everyone to get tested that had been to any of the locations that have known cases, or if they have possible symptoms, and the contract tracers are doing great work to identify 100% of the contacts of anyone that tests positive. But we won't know for a couple of weeks how large this outbreak develops before it is brought back under control. I had planned to drive up to our lake house and visit my parents with DS1 and DS2 for a long weekend after NYE, and then for DS2 to stay with his grandparents for three weeks during the summer school holidays. But unless this outbreak gets stamped out within the next two weeks I'll probably cancel our visit and wait until the April school holidays to visit my parents at the lake house/hobby farm at Lake Wallis. No point putting my 89 year old father and 85 year old mother ask risk needlessly.

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