In semi-relieving news, the safest place in the world to wait out the coronavirus pandemic is South Australia, according to state officials.

As of Thursday, South Australia has gone a week without a single new COVID-19 case, making it the first state to hit that milestone.

A day earlier, the state’s Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier even compared SA’s success with that of New Zealand.

“I think many people are surprised in Australia at how well we have done. Really, this is the safest place to be in the world, perhaps other than New Zealand,” she said.

“It’s taken a lot of work and it’s meant that everybody has had to play their part and I absolutely understand how difficult the restrictions have been, but it has paid off.”

South Australia has had just 384 confirmed coronavirus cases, with the majority of people (370) recovered. Four people have sadly passed away.

A four-week period of no new cases is being used as the benchmark to lift lockdown restrictions, after the state virtually shut its borders in March.

In the Barossa Valley, restrictions were eased on Wednesday after the region went 28 days without a new case.

Over in New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the nation had “won [the] battle” against undetected community transmission of the virus.

The country also closed its borders and essentially shut down when it had recorded just 102 cases, making it among the swiftest responses to the pandemic in the world.

Now the country has recorded 1,474 cases with 14 deaths as it moves to gradually ease lockdown restrictions.

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