Coronavirus NSW death toll rises as 6th Newmarch House resident dies


NSW’s COVID-19 death toll now stands at 36 after a sixth resident died at a western Sydney aged care home where almost 50 people have been infected.

The 83-year-old man, who resided at Newmarch House in Caddens, died on Saturday morning, operator Anglicare Sydney said.

This follows the death of a 96-year-old woman on Friday morning, a woman in her late 70s on Thursday and earlier fatalities of a woman and two men all aged in their 90s.

The facility is the state’s largest ongoing cluster, with some 31 of the almost 100 residents having been infected as well as 17 staff members.

An aged care worker at the healthcare facility in the Blue Mountains also tested positive for coronavirus, one of 12 new cases confirmed in NSW on Saturday.

media_cameraA sixth resident at Newmarch House in Caddens has died from COVID-19. Picture: AAP/Dan Himbrechts

The worker from Catholic Healthcare Bodington had not been at the aged care home within 48 hours of showing symptoms, Channel 7 reported.

NSW Health said no other positive cases had been confirmed at the facility. The total number of confirmed cases in NSW is 2994, more than 44 per cent of Australia’s total number of cases at 6695. Some 19 people are in intensive care in NSW.

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The majority of NSW confirmed cases have been found in people aged 20 to 29, with 635 positive tests making up more than 21 per cent of the state’s total cases.

This comes as the controversial app to help trace people who come into contact with someone with COVID-19 will be launched on Sunday.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has backed the new app. Picture: Mandel Ngan/AFP
media_cameraHome Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has backed the new app. Picture: Mandel Ngan/AFP

The Australian app is based on Singapore’s Tracetogether software, which records the Bluetooth connections a phone makes with others so the user can give that data to state health authorities if they catch the virus.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton, who has recovered from a bout of COVID-19, said it was a more effective approach than checking your diary or trying to remember where you had been.

“The beauty of the app is that it can have a handshake, if you like, with people that you’ve been in close proximity with, find the phone,” he told Sky Sunday Agenda.

He said the privacy issues had been dealt with, and said the app would help the authorities stop the spread of the virus.

“It’s an incredibly important next step.”

A broader testing regime and a government contact tracing app are seen as key stepping stones to a relaxation of the economic shutdown.

The government wants at least 40 per cent of the population to sign up so officials can do “industrial-scale” contact tracing.

Originally published as Nursing home COVID-19 outbreak takes another life



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