There has been a lot of confusion in the MidCoast community following the announcement from Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Thursday, September 9 that the Mid North Coast would be coming out of lockdown on the weekend.
However, Deputy Premier John Barilaro confirmed that the MidCoast local government area (LGA) is categorically staying in lockdown, due to one active case in Booral.
"I can make it absolutely clear that the MidCoast local government area, because of that one case and even though there is question marks around how much exposure and how much risk it had, is not coming out of lockdown this week. But that will be reviewed again over the next seven days," said NSW Deputy Premier, John Barilaro.
The confusion came about because of inconsistent messaging from the NSW government around health districts and LGAs, and the Deputy Premier told the Manning River Times he would clear that up.
While the Mid North Coast Health District (Port Macquarie and north) will be among the health districts that will emerge from lockdown at 12:01am Saturday, September, 11 the MidCoast LGA remains under the stay-at-home orders until further notice.
The decision was made with the advice from Hunter New England Health District (HNEHD) due to the risk associated with the one positive COVID case in Booral.
Although HNEHD advised that the case in Booral was in isolation through their entire infectious period, NSW Health advised that there is still "a high level of risk," Deputy Premier said.
"They (the MidCoast LGA) had the one case with minimal exposure to the community but we need longer than a couple of days to see how that plays out.
"I do ask the community to be patient with us and I do understand the confusion," he said.
To have lockdown lifted, an LGA must have not had a new active case in 14 days.
The decision for the MidCoast LGA will be reviewed in seven days, the Deputy Premier said.
Our COVID-19 news articles relating to public health and safety are free for anyone to access. However, we depend on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.