NSW has reached a “critical stage” in its COVID-19 pandemic fight, with 149 new cases overnight increasing the total infected to 818.
NSW has reached a "critical stage" in its COVID-19 pandemic fight, with 149 new cases overnight increasing the total infected to 818.
In the face of sharply rising cases and confusion over her school closure policy, Premier Gladys Berejiklian threatened to crack down on anyone flouting isolation and social distancing measures.
Ms Berejiklian said NSW had suffered a "substantial increase" in coronavirus cases over the past 24 hours.
The state's death toll sits at six and there are currently 13 people seriously ill in ICU.
"We are at a critical stage, and I can't emphasise that enough," Ms Berejiklian said.
NSW health authorities are investigating a troubling "cluster" of 174 community contact transmissions.
She urged NSW residents to comply with all COVID-19 lockdown restrictions to help contain the spread.
"We are ramping up our compliance," Ms Berejiklian said.
"We're making sure that people are followed up. If they're supposed to be in self-isolation and they're not, there are harsh penalties and we'll enforce that."
Under heavy questioning from reporters, she reiterated yesterday's announcement that NSW schools were open.
But the premier recommended parents keep their children at home.
She rejected criticism the policy was confusing for parents.
"I'm incredibly pleased with the decisions we've taken to date," Ms Berejiklian said.
The average absentee rate in New South Wales schools usually sits at about 8 per cent.
Yesterday, even before the premier's message on school closures, public schools were hit with absentee rates of 41 per cent.
Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/coronavirus-as-nsw-cases-jump-to-818-premier-threatens-to-get-tough/4cc71216-afbd-4c0b-bc00-06e7d1f0d606