Bondi Will Score Its Own Pop-Up COVID-19 Testing Clinic After A Jump In Backpacker Infections

A pop-up coronavirus (COVID-19) testing clinic will be established in Bondi as NSW Health contends with “active clusters” of confirmed cases in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.

Speaking to the media this morning, NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said authorities had clocked a spike in confirmed cases among backpackers and are working to ramp up testing in several hard-hit postcodes.

“We do know there is a potential risk that other members of the community may have come in contact with infected backpackers,” Chant said this morning.

“For prudency, we want to increase testing.”

ABC reports the Bondi pop-up clinic will be run in conjunction with St Vincent’s Hospital.

The announcement comes a week after a number of backpackers staying at the tourist hot spot tested positive for the virus. One day earlier, public access to the beach was cut for concerns over community transmission.

Confirmed cases in NSW broke past 2,000 overnight, with the state adding 114 to the count. The tally stands at 2032 overall.

While the number of new confirmed cases in down considerably compared to the daily counts NSW has experienced in recent days, Dr Chant said that may be due to the “weekend effect” — that is, fewer people may have sought testing over Saturday and Sunday due to GP closures.

NSW introduced a new public health order overnight which effectively makes it unlawful to leave the house without a valid excuse. Harsh penalties also apply for public gatherings of greater than two people.

If you think you may have coronavirus, either call your doctor (DON’T visit) or contact the national Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080. If you’re struggling to breathe or experiencing a medical emergency, call 000.

And please remember to wash your hands frequently (for at least 20 seconds) and keep at least 1.5 metres between you and those around you.