Health authorities have identified a shopping mall in Sydney’s south-west as “a key venue of concern” amid fears customers could have been exposed to COVID-19 there for 11 days.
NSW Health said anyone who attended the Campsie Centre between July 14 and 24 was deemed a close contact and must get tested, and isolate for 14 days regardless of the result.
People with COVID-19 visited the centre, which is in the Canterbury-Bankstown local government area (LGA) — one of several in Sydney’s west and south-west to be singled out as virus hot spots.
NSW Health said “onwards transmission” had already been detected at the Campsie Centre.
“With Campsie, it is a community where we had a lot of cases and sometimes it is difficult to tease out what the source of the infection was versus where people are travelling when they are infectious,” NSW Health’s Jeremy McAnulty said.
“Over time it was clear that a number of cases had visited the shopping centre there and there was transmission identified in a number of shops in Campsie.”
Dr McAnulty said “many people” had been exposed at the centre.
“It is a very popular shopping centre,” he said.
The infections at the Campsie Centre added an exclamation point to what was, statistically, the worst day of NSW’s Delta outbreak so far.
A total of 172 new COVID-19 infections were recorded in the 24 hours to 8:00pm yesterday, while 169 people with the virus have been admitted to hospital.
Of the new infections, 60 were infectious in the community, 19 cases were in isolation for part of their infectious period and the isolation status of 32 cases remains under investigation.
When those numbers are combined, it means up to 111 people with COVID-19 could have exposed others to the virus.
Of the people in hospital with COVID-19, 46 are in intensive care, 14 requiring ventilators.
Shopping centre exposures have been a feature of NSW’s Delta outbreak — last month, people who had attended Westfield Bondi Junction were encouraged to get tested after one of the first confirmed cases of the outbreak visited.
However, the crisis has since moved from Sydney’s eastern suburbs to the south-west, and west.
Of the 172 new cases announced today, 65 are from the South Western Sydney Local Health District (LHD), 54 are from the Western Sydney LHD and 27 are from the Sydney LHD.