News Coronavirus Newmarch House virus cluster grows

Newmarch House virus cluster grows

newmarch house virus report
There were 19 deaths at Newmarch House during the COVID outbreak. Photo: Getty
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At least three additional workers at the coronavirus-hit Newmarch House nursing home in western Sydney have been confirmed to have COVID-19.

NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant said on Tuesday two more aged-care workers had been diagnosed with COVID-19 late on Monday.

Newmarch House operator Anglicare confirmed a third case on Tuesday morning.

The latter staff member had worked solely in the facility’s coronavirus-positive ward.

The ABC is also reporting that Anglicare, has asked healthcare contractor Aspen Medical to stand down one of its staff at the home, over alleged breaches of infection control.

“It is our understanding that this staff member was asymptomatic … they are now self-isolating,” Anglicare said.

A male resident at Newmarch House died on Monday, taking the toll at the Caddens home to 15 and across NSW to 45.

Some 37 of about 100 Newmarch House residents have tested positive to the virus.

“Two new cases were from staff members at Newmarch House and detected as part of the screening process that has been put in place,” Dr Chant said on Tuesday.

Staff at Newmarch are undergoing daily testing for the virus, to try to manage Australia’s second deadliest coronavirus outbreak after the cruise ship Ruby Princess.

Three new virus cases were recorded on Tuesday in NSW – the two Newmarch House workers and a health worker in western Sydney who did not work while infectious.

On Monday, federal Aged Care Minister Richard Colbeck said discussions were under way with some Newmarch House residents’ family members to remove them from the home.

He said it could be eight weeks before the facility is coronavirus-free.

newmarch house cluster grows
NSW Police searched the Ruby Princess at Port Kembla as part of their inquiry in April. Photo: NSW Police

Meanwhile, the Special Commission of Inquiry into the Ruby Princess cruise ship will begin its third round on Tuesday. It is examining the missteps of the ill-fated ship, which has been linked to more than 20 coronavirus deaths and 600 infections across Australia.

The first two sittings included witness testimonies from the cruise ship’s doctor Ilse Von Watzdorf and the hotel manager on board, Charles Verwall.

The hearings will run on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, with five new witnesses expected on Tuesday.

A seven-year-old schoolboy from Warragamba Public School in western Sydney was the sole new case of COVID-19 reported in NSW on Monday.

The school is closed for intensive cleaning.

NSW has recorded 3035 COVID-19 cases, with 13 in intensive care.

-with AAP