Gippsland South The Nationals COVID-19 Coronavirus restrictions roadmap contact tracing case reporting

Concerns raised over positive case locations

Gippsland Nationals MPs are calling on the Andrews Labor Government to ensure accurate reporting of positive COVID-19 cases, which have become critical to the relaxation of current restrictions.

The Nationals Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien and Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull have both had confirmation of cases that were reported against Wellington and East Gippsland Shires when in fact the people involved were in Melbourne and not at their home base in Gippsland at any stage of their infection.

“This has been an issue of concern for me for some time as I know a number of the cases from East Gippsland and I know they either contracted COVID-19 in hospital in Melbourne or were in Melbourne at the time, and remained there for the duration of their illness,” Mr Bull said.

“If the Government is going to make decisions based on outbreaks in certain locations, then using the registered home address of someone with COVID-19 can lead to a decision on restriction levels in certain areas being based on inaccuracies.”

Mr O’Brien said he was aware of at least one case in Wellington Shire where the same situation had occurred.

“It makes absolutely no sense to list that there is a case in Wellington, East Gippsland or any other Shire if the person with that case has not been there at any stage while contagious or receiving treatment for COVID-19.

“Not only is that misleading for the local community in knowing about cases locally but now, with the restrictions to be eased based on the roadmap and cases in local areas, it has the potential to further delay the easing of restrictions for tens of thousands of people,” said Mr O’Brien.

“I have had similar concerns about the accuracy of the daily reporting given inconsistencies between what I have heard locally from official sources such as police, and what has actually been reported.

“Gippslanders have been very good in abiding by the restrictions but there is a two-way trust process and the Government has to get its data reporting right if people are to have confidence in the process.”


11 September 2020


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