Coronavirus-related restrictions across Greater Sydney will ease from Monday, with NSW again recording zero new locally-acquired virus cases.
The zero new local cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday came from more than 12,200 tests, while three new cases were uncovered in hotel quarantine.
As a result, NSW Health said in a statement on Sunday the temporary coronavirus-related restrictions in Greater Sydney – established 10 days ago after a mystery east Sydney case – would ease after midnight on Sunday.
The limit on private gatherings in homes will lift, all singing and dancing will be allowed and mask usage will not be compulsory on public transport.
NSW Health on Sunday said that despite its investigations, the source of the east Sydney man’s COVID-19 infection remains unclear.
The man in his 50s and a returned traveller in hotel quarantine in Sydney had the same genetic strain of the virus, however the pair have no known link.
The man subsequently infected his wife but no other known people.
“As these two cases have shown, COVID-19 may re-emerge at any time, so it is important that we all continue to take practical measures to stay COVID-safe,” NSW Health’s Dr Natalie Klees said in a statement.
Almost 920,000 COVID-19 vaccines have been administered to date in NSW, including jabs overseen by state and federal governments.
One COVID-19 patient in NSW is currently in intensive care and on a ventilator.
Meanwhile, NSW’s public service union has warned that a lack of security and “rostering chaos” is leading to unrest among the state’s contact tracers.
Many of the workers, who interview infected residents and chase down COVID’s spread, are not employed directly by the NSW government, the Public Service Association said in a statement on Saturday.
Instead, they are engaged through ad-hoc labour hire arrangements.
The union said there was “growing rostering chaos” and relayed reports of rising absenteeism, increased turnover and plummeting morale.
PSA assistant secretary Troy Wight warned workers, many of whom are stood-down airline staffers, may soon quit their roles.
“Insecure work and pandemics just don’t mix,” Mr Wright said.
“COVID-19 isn’t going anywhere, we need to make contact tracers permanent employees so that they’ll be there when we need them.”
Australian Associated Press