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Top End waits to hear if local lockout will end after outbreak

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The Northern Territory is waiting to learn if its first community outbreak of COVID-19 is under control and the lockout of unvaccinated people will end.

A press conference has been scheduled for 3:30pm (local time) on Monday, after Chief Minister Michael Gunner cancelled an earlier event with a promise to provide an update later in the day.

Health restrictions were imposed in Greater Darwin and Katherine, 320km to the south, late Thursday after an unvaccinated man in his 20s contracted the virus without leaving the NT.

The diagnosis alarmed authorities as they realised the origin of his infection was potentially roaming about the Top End.

Katherine was fully locked down, along with unvaccinated people in Greater Darwin, until the source was found to be a 21-year-old woman who had flown to the NT from Cairns.

She had also visited South Australia and Victoria before lying on her NT border entry form and spending two nights with the index case at a Darwi n hotel.

The woman was fined $5024 on Sunday and the full lockdown was eased to a lockout of unvaccinated people in Katherine after no new cases were diagnosed.

The lockout in Greater Darwin and Katherine is scheduled to end at 11:59pm on Monday. However, that could change with Mr Gunner saying authorities were “working through new information from last night and this morning” via social media earlier in the day.

The NT cluster has three cases and all the infected people are in quarantine at the National Centre for Resilience.

Only unvaccinated people who haven’t had two jabs are locked down. Fully vaccinated people are able to move about the community and all businesses are permitted to remain open if their staff have had two jabs.

The NT is calling this a lockout as a vaccine certificate must be shown before people can enter premises. Locked down people can leave their homes for the five essential reasons.

 

Original content from Comms RoomNote: Content may be edited for style and length.

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