The Northern Territories’ Chief Minister Michael Gunner is expected to provide more details about an outbreak of COVID-19 cases in two remote Indigenous communities after a further ten cases were identified.
On Saturday, it was announced five men and four women had been diagnosed in Binjari, about 330km south of Darwin, bring the current cluster to 31 cases.
A woman from Robinson River, 1000km southeast of Darwin, became the sixth person in her community to be diagnosed.
All are Indigenous Territorians aged between 17 and 78.
“This information has only just come in this evening and tracing and all other work is happening now,” Chief Minister Michael Gunner said via social media on Saturday.”
“Significant work will continue overnight, and we will provide more detail on all the cases and any new cases tomorrow”.
The outbreak was triggered by a 21-year-old infected woman who illegally entered the NT in late October after contracting the virus in Victoria and lying on her border entry form.
Meanwhile, unvaccinated travellers will no longer be able to enter the NT from Monday, under sweeping changes to the territory’s border rules.
The only exception will be essential personnel and Territorians returning from jurisdictions where COVID is not present, called green zones.
Fully vaccinated arrivals from red zones where the virus is present will be able to quarantine at home for seven days.
But they will need to have a rapid antigen test upon arrival in the NT and return a negative PCR test within 72 hours.
They must also get re-tested five, eight and 14 days after leaving quarantine and stay in a high vaccination zone away from aged care facilities and remote communities.
The home quarantine requirement is scheduled to end on December 20 with rapid antigen testing extended to all arrivals.
Original content from AAP Newsroom. Note: Content has been edited for style and length.
Nina Alvarez is a Content Producer for Healthcare Channel. Her interests include writing, particularly about the healthcare sector and the many ways it can improve to further benefit people from all walks of life.