The Department of Health and Human Services has informed the Hepburn Shire Council  that COVID-19 virus particles were found in Daylesford waste water on Monday, November 30th.

Virus particles in waste water indicates that someone has been shedding the virus. While it is possible that this means some who is infectious has been in Daylesford, it may also be because someone who has had COVID and is no longer infectious has visited.

Someone who is no longer infectious can continue to shed virus particles for several weeks before shedding stops. However, particles in waste water can also mean that someone who is in the early stages of infection is shedding the virus.

There have been no reported cases of COVID-19 in Daylesford or Hepburn Springs but health authorities will increase their testing and continue to monitor the waste water closely.

Finding virus particles means people should continue to be vigilant and follow the COVID-19 safety rules – hand hygiene, social distancing, mask wearing and getting tested if symptoms occur.

As a safety precaution, residents and visitors who have any symptoms of COVID-19 at all should get tested immediately – even if symptoms are mild. This includes fever, chills or sweats, cough, sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath and loss or change of smell or taste. People who get tested should self-isolate while they wait for their results.

Cr Lesley Hewitt, the Hepburn Shire Mayor said, ‘The Shire will closely monitor what’s happening to support residents and businesses to be safe. People should follow the COVID19 rules for social distancing, hand hygiene and mask wearing. If you have any symptoms, get tested as soon as possible.’

Central Highlands Rural Health has testing sites at Daylesford Health (call 03 5321 6654) and Kyneton Health (call 03 5422 9900)