Playground transmission probed as COVID-19 increases in children
âGetting to a playground is one of the few things you have left to ease boredom with the kids, it’s a punch in the guts,â he said.
Child health experts are divided over the government’s approach.
Fiona Russell of the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute said the Delta strain was more contagious to adults and children, and therefore more difficult to mitigate, saying “the problem is there is no alternative [to Melbourneâs lockdown] for the moment because there is no plan for the schools â.
âIdeally, teachers should be given priority for vaccination, VCE students should be offered vaccination, and parents should also be vaccinated. These are all things that should help prevent infections in children, âsaid Professor Russell.
However, infectious disease pediatrician Professor Robert Booy questioned the basis for the government’s ban on playgrounds.
“There is a statement from the Chief Medical Officer of Health that perhaps contact in a playground may have led to transmission of the disease,” said the University of NSW academic. âIs it evidence-based medicine? Are we really basing the policy on a possible case of transmission in a playground? “
âDespite the increase in child hospitalizations in some countries, there are very few deaths. Indeed, the Australian healthcare system is so much better than that of the United States, that we are unlikely to see more [a] few deaths among children despite the high number of infections.
Following exhibition sites were added on Tuesday, including a daycare center in the southeastern suburb of Carrum Downs, and the government urged more people to get tested in a bid to contain the outbreak and ease restrictions on September 2, as foreseen.
There are five unrelated cases in the St Kilda East area, near where 69 guests from Melbourne’s Orthodox Jewish community attended an illegal engagement party last week.
Ms Matson said that “these cases are not related by age, they are not related by faith, they are not all in the same book club, they are not all in the same football club” .
About fifty exhibition sites now stretch from south Melbourne to Brighton, fueling fears of a potential for new epidemics.
However, amid anger over the engagement party that resulted in at least one case of transmission, Mr Andrews spoke out against cases of anti-Semitism directed against the Jewish community.
In one case, a Royal Melbourne Hospital staff member was fired after allegedly posting an anti-Semitic comment on social media about the party.
“Anti-Semitism is unacceptable and harmful, and we have a zero tolerance approach to it in our state,” Andrews said.
âThe eventâ¦ was unrelated to being Jewish. These people [who broke the rules] are processed. Breaking the rules was not a reflection of the wider Jewish community. “
Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien agreed, saying it was no use “scapegoating” people.
âThe vast majority of Victorians make good decisions, a small minority made bad decisions,â he said. “It doesn’t matter what part of Victoria they live in, it doesn’t matter if they go to a church, mosque, synagogue or temple or anywhere. It doesn’t matter which football team they choose.
The comments came after the Melbourne lockdown was extended for another two weeks, prompting an angry backlash from civil liberty groups, state opposition and weary Victorians.
As mental health experts warned of the impact of the extended lockdown, Andrews acknowledged on Tuesday that the government may need to devote more resources to the mental health system to help those struggling to cope.
Professor Sutton also gave his support behind the appointment of a Mental Health Commander to attend daily government briefings and provide advice to Victorians “on how best to deal with these difficult circumstances”.
Under the latest changes, the number of employees will be limited on construction sites and the exercise rules have also been tightened.
Victoria’s Minister of Public Transport also announced on Tuesday that nightly public transport services would not operate on Fridays and Saturdays during the lockdown.
Labor MPs who spoke to Age on condition of anonymity for fear of publicly criticizing, the government said there were pockets of unrest among marginal seat holders over the latest restrictions, but many MPs said they were confident in the ‘approach by the Prime Minister, which has been described as a deliberate tactic to “blame it elsewhere”.
“[Mr Andrews] aligns with the underlying community feeling that it is not our fault, âa Labor MP said.
âIf you have to announce a lockout extension and you sound angry like he did, then it can’t be your fault.
âInstead, he goes over there and says it’s NSW, or it’s the people at the engagement party and it works.
“If things weren’t so bad for the Federal Government and NSW, then the mood might be different here, but it isn’t.”
With Annika Smethurst, Sumeyya Ilanbey and David Estcourt