The Penrith Local Government Area (LGA) has hit the unwanted milestone of 100 cases of Coronavirus.
A significant number of the 100 comes from the concerning cluster at Newmarch House nursing home in Caddens, where there are 41 cases, including 27 residents and 14 staff.
Two elderly residents of Newmarch House have died in days following their positive COVID-19 diagnosis.
NSW Health continues to flag the Penrith LGA as an area of concern and will continue to ramp up testing in the area this week. Anyone with even mild symptoms of the virus is encouraged to get tested.
Of most concern to health officials is the 11 cases in the Penrith LGA that have no known source of infection and were locally acquired.
Residents are being urged to continue to follow social distancing guidelines and stay at home unless it’s for essential shopping, education, work or exercise.
But even exercise is proving problematic, with Penrith’s popular ‘river walk’ attracting thousands of people a day – many flouting the current guidelines. Residents are reminded exercise is limited to groups of two people, unless from the same household.
Council won’t consider closing the walk due to the number of access points, but it’s understood police will increase monitoring this week.
Across the Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District, there has been 148 positive Coronavirus cases with 9,263 people tested.
Troy Dodds is the Weekender’s Managing Editor and Senior Writer. He has more than 15 years experience as a journalist, working with some of Australia’s leading media organisations.