More COVID risks emerged for Daylesford over the last week. Living with COVID is becoming a reality.
Two tier 2 exposure sites were identified. People who attended Cellarbrations at 55 Vincent Street on the 27th of September between 3.15 and 4.15 pm and Coles in Bridport Street on the 26th of September between 6.30 and 7.00 pm are required to get tested urgently and isolate until they have a negative test.
Moorabool Shire, next door will go into a week lockdown from Friday night, 1 st of October to deal with local outbreaks.
It is likely that Victoria will reach its vaccination targets for reopening by early November. Melbourne will then reopen and there will be many more visitors for Daylesford and Hepburn Springs.
With more visitors, the risk of COVID transmission increases.
Up until only a month ago, all efforts concentrated on eliminating COVID from the community. Now the community is facing the reality of living with the ongoing risk of infection.
Vaccination lessens the chance of catching COVID and dramatically reduces the risk of serious illness and death – but not completely. The balance between more freedom and the risk the community is willing to live with is being cautiously explored – business interests tugging one way, health interests the other.
The Victorian Road Map anticipates that all retail, schools, social and recreational activities will be permitted with restrictions once 80 percent double vaccinations is reached – probably around the 5th of November.Roadmap_Regional_190921_1
The plan sets out high level guidelines. Masks will be required indoors, density limits have to be met, and people will have to be fully vaccinated to participate in group and social activities.
But the devil is in the detail and many issues have not been resolved for local businesses and community organisations. These include checking and recording of vaccination status, dealing with vaccination refusers, managing vaccination exemptions, rules for staff vaccinations, and cleaning and closure when positive cases attend a venue where everyone is vaccinated.
There is now a blizzard of COVID instructions and advice coming from regulators, Commonwealth and State government departments, funders and peak bodies.
Local community groups and businesses will have to prepare for the challenge of operating with COVID in the community. Not an easy thing to do as the deadlines rush towards us.