Victoria is ‘one more stuff up away’ from another outbreak: Vic Shadow Police Minister


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IPL 2021: news, Kolkata Knight Riders, COVID-19, outbreak, Pat Cummins, update, KKR vs RCB, Varun Chakravarthy, coronavirus,


The Indian Premier League has been hit with a serious COVID-19 setback, with two Kolkata Knight Riders players testing positive for the virus.

Indian bowling duo Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier were the players to contract the virus.

The seventh-placed side’s clash with Royal Challengers Bangalore (midnight tonight AEST) has been postponed – the first fixture this tournament to be called off due to coronavirus.

Two Australians – Pat Cummins and Ben Cuttings – play for Kolkata, and there are fears they may have been exposed to COVID-19.

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Tasmanian border to open to Victoria, as Premier praises fast action in containing COVID outbreak


Premier Peter Gutwein has confirmed Tasmania’s border will open to Victoria from midnight as originally flagged.

Victoria will be designated a low-risk area for COVID-19, meaning people can travel between the two states unless they have been to an area identified as high risk.

On Wednesday, Tasmania’s director of public health Mark Veitch said Tasmania would open its borders provided there was no evidence of community risk within 48 hours.

Victoria announced three new locally acquired infections on Friday, all from the same family. All of them have been in quarantine while infectious.

Mr Gutwein praised Victoria’s quick response to the recent outbreak.

“I’m pleased that because of the fast action that was undertaken in Victoria in response to their cases, the contact tracing that went on, and the way that they responded, the situation has been kept in check,” Mr Gutwein said.

Vaccine to arrive sooner

The Tasmanian government also announced the COVID-19 vaccine will arrive in the state on Sunday, with vaccinations to begin in Hobart on Tuesday.

Border control and quarantine support staff, nurses involved in administering vaccines, and emergency department and intensive care staff will be among the first to receive the vaccine.

Health Department secretary Kathrine Morgan-Wicks said it would be a “slow and steady” rollout.

She said 100 workers a week would be vaccinated for the first three weeks, with the rollout ramping up after that.

The vaccine program will expand to hubs at Launceston General and North West regional hospitals from March 16.

Public Health has also reported a significant increase in Tasmanians getting COVID tests, with more than 2,400 tests conducted in the past three days.

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Serial antigen testing may be an effective strategy for controlling infection during a nursing home SARS-CoV-2 outbreak


Transmission electron micrograph of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, isolated from a patient. Image captured and color-enhanced at the NIAID Integrated Research Facility (IRF) in Fort Detrick, Maryland. Credit: NIAID

A prospective study found that serial antigen testing could be an effective strategy to support infection control in nursing homes having a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak. While less sensitive than real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) diagnostic tests, the authors say that antigen tests perform well when it counts—when someone is infectious and at risk for spreading the virus. The findings are published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Serial, facility-wide testing for SARS-CoV-2 can help identify cases in outbreak settings, allowing for rapid implementation of transmission-based precautions and infection prevention and control strategies. RT-PCR testing performed in a laboratory has the highest sensitivity, but its prolonged turnaround time can delay quarantine and isolation implementation. Antigen tests are easy to do and produce results in minutes, facilitating rapid action. However, performance data are lacking, especially in asymptomatic people.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) studied 532 specimens from 234 available residents and staff at a nursing home with a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak to evaluate the performance of antigen testing when used during an emerging outbreak. Two specimens were collected from all residents and staff 3 times over a 13-day period. Trained laboratory scientists tested one swab onsite using a rapid antigen test and the other was sent to the CDC for RT-PCR and virus culture reference testing. The researchers found that overall, the antigen test was less sensitive than RT-PCR, but it performed well in identifying early infections and specimens with replication-competent virus (that is, culture-positive). Further, consensus test analysis of individuals with a positive result and more than one test suggested that repeated testing produced similar positive agreement for antigen testing compared with RT-PCR, even in asymptomatic patients. According to the authors, these data suggest that early and frequent antigen testing during a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak may be an effective strategy for identifying infectious people with the greatest potential to transmit the virus.


Follow the latest news on the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak


More information:
Study: https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/10.7326/M21-0422

Editorial: https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/10.7326/M21-1667

Provided by
American College of Physicians

Citation:
Serial antigen testing may be an effective strategy for controlling infection during a nursing home SARS-CoV-2 outbreak (2021, April 27)
retrieved 27 April 2021
from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-04-serial-antigen-effective-strategy-infection.html

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COVID live: Indian coronavirus outbreak prompts government to pause all flights from country



There have been calls to expand hotel quarantine and have the federal government take it over, rather than individual states taking care of their own systems.

But Mr Morrison said Australia’s system was working better than any other country’s.

“If I told you a year ago, just over a year ago, when the National Cabinet agreed to put in place a system of hotel quarantine … that we would achieve a 99.99 per cent success rate, you wouldn’t have believed me. No-one in this country would have believed me. I would have found that hard to believe. But that’s what the hotel quarantine system has achieved.

“Hotel quarantine is the first ring of containment. With a 99.99 success rate is pretty good. I don’t think there’s not a country in the world that wouldn’t want a quarantine system that’s been working as effective as that. It’s not 100 per cent fool proof. And in 0.01 per cent, or less, of cases, you’ll see occasional breaches. I make no criticism of any state or territory, but on occasion we’ll see breaches.

“The challenge we’ve seen Western Australia respond to, and other states respond to on other occasions, is the ring of containment that comes in place with their contact tracing system. That’s what has been achieved again. This is how the system works. A system that is achieving 99.99 per cent effectiveness is a very strong system and is serving Australia very well.”

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Mouse plague spreads, farmers warned not to bet on winter ending outbreak


Julian Cross has been battling the pests for months at his farm near Kumbia in Queensland and said a second wave of mice had emerged at Easter time.

“We’ve had a few in the past but never to this extent and it’s ongoing,” he said. 

“They just bar into the cobs and chew on the corn and on the mung beans — they nibble at the pods and the pod dies. 

As winter approaches, farmers like Mr Cross are hoping the colder weather will start putting a dent in the mice population.

“We’re hoping if we can clean the food source up a bit and get a good cold winter, that might steady their gallop,” he said. 

CSIRO researcher Steve Henry said farmers had to stay vigilant and should not rely on the weather to end the plague.

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MCG hosts biggest crowd since COVID-19 outbreak for Anzac Day AFL clash between Collingwood and Essendon


A year to the day since a lone bugler played the Last Post inside an empty stadium, the MCG has played host to the biggest crowd at a sporting event anywhere in the world since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

The traditional Anzac Day clash is the biggest AFL home-and-away game of the season and it once more lived up to that billing.

After COVID-19 put a line through the 2020 blockbuster, 78,113 fans turned out to watch Collingwood and Essendon face off, with the Bombers running out 24-point winners in an entertaining match.

The crowd comfortably topped the 67,000 that attended a Twenty20 cricket match between India and England in Ahmedabad last month.

Sitting 15th and 16th on the ladder before the match, both teams are enduring difficult seasons but that did nothing to subdue the atmosphere.

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Victorian fans have been more reluctant than normal to attend games this year as the world adapts to life amid a pandemic.

But with the state government this week increasing capacity at the MCG to 85 per cent, no diehard fan was missing this.

On the same weekend banners returned to AFL fields, Collingwood and Essendon ran through the same one — an entrance that has become an Anzac Day tradition.

Two men in military clothes sit in the back of a ute at the Anzac Day AFL game between Essendon and Collingwood.
80,000 people were allowed at the MCG for the traditional Anzac Day clash.(

AAP: Rob Prezioso

)

Next was the minute’s silence and the performance of the Last Post.

While last year’s recorded rendition was unforgettable in its own way, once again having a stadium full of people remembering the sacrifices of fallen soldiers was truly special.

The Last Post is played before all games during the Anzac Day round, but what stands out at the Collingwood-Essendon clash is the roar after the national anthem.

Not since the 2019 finals series has there been such a loud noise at a football game in Victoria.

AAP

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PM Morrison confirms arrivals from India could be cut even further over COVID-19 outbreak


The number of passengers arriving from India could be cut even further if the world’s worst COVID-19 outbreak continues to run out of control.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Thursday revealed arrivals from India would be slashed by a third, while travel the other way will be banned except in “very urgent circumstances”.

India recorded 314,835 cases on Thursday, the worst single-day case increase in any country since the pandemic began.

Direct flights from the country land in Sydney and the Northern Territory, and Mr Morrison said the federal government would work with the states and territory leaders to strengthen the measures if necessary.

RELATED: Australia limits arrivals from India over escalating COVID-19 outbreak

“If the state government wants to do more than that, we will work with them to that end,” he told reporters on Friday.

“If we need to go further (in the Northern Territory), they’re the discussions I’m having directly with Chief Minister Gunner.

“We’re all working on the same page there.”

COVID-19 cases in Australia’s hotel quarantine system linked to India have jumped from 10 per cent to 40 per cent since January.

Anyone who has been in India within the last 14 days will also be required to undertake a PCR COVID-19 test 72 hours before boarding in their last port of call before departing for Australia.

“That will put a brake, a filter, on those who are getting on the flights,” Mr Morrison said.

“It’s not a simple matter of just saying people from India can’t come to Australia because they are not coming directly from India.”

Mr Morrison said the measures had been unanimously agreed by national cabinet.

Labor leader Anthony Albanese accepted health advice underpinned the decision but said the outbreak in India showed an urgent need for the government to get its vaccine rollout back on track.

“It just shows as well, given that the situation in India had been improving prior to the latest outbreak, that we can’t be complacent,” he said on Friday.

“It is one of the reasons why we need vaccinations to occur and for Scott Morrison to do it properly.”

But the Prime Minister revealed there had only been a slight increase in cases in hotel quarantine despite the outbreak in India, which has been listed as ‘high risk’ by the federal government.

He predicted on Thursday that list would expand in the coming days.

“We need to put in place the risk management that protects it going over the next few weeks and the pandemic is raging around the world,” he said.

“I don’t expect this to be the last time when we have to make such a decision.”

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COVID live updates: WA Premier to give press conference after Perth quarantine hotel outbreak



Perth COVID-19 update at 1:30pm AWST

Just to reiterate that one, we’re expecting to hear from the WA Premier in about half an hour on the coronavirus situation in the state.

A Victorian man this morning tested positive in Melbourne after completing 14 days of quarantine at a WA quarantine hotel, and a pregnant woman and her four-year-old daughter also tested positive after their stay. 

They contracted the virus from an infected couple who had returned from India and were staying in a room opposite them.

We’ll hear more from the premier soon.

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Canucks win 1st game after return from COVID-19 outbreak


The Vancouver Canucks made a splash in their return from a COVID-19 outbreak Sunday, edging the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 in overtime.

Captain Bo Horvat snapped in the game-winner 1:19 into the extra frame for his second goal of the game. He also registered an assist in the win over the North Division-leading Leafs.

Nils Hoglander also scored and notched a helper in regulation for the Canucks (16-20-3), who were playing their first game since March 24.

William Nylander had a goal and an assist for the Leafs (29-12-4), while Auston Matthews added a goal in his return from a nagging wrist injury and John Tavares contributed a pair of assists.

WATCH | Horvat leads Canucks to OT win over Leafs in team’s return:

Vancouver captain Bo Horvat scored the overtime winner in his team’s emotional return to NHL action on Sunday night. 1:44

Jack Campbell stopped 21 of 24 shots for Toronto and Vancouver got a solid 37-save performance from Braden Holtby.

The Leafs remain atop the all-Canadian North Division and hold a 4-2 edge in the season series with three games to go.

League’s worst outbreak

The Canucks suffered the NHL’s worst COVID-19 outbreak when the P1 variant of the virus swept through the team late last month.

Twenty-one players and four coaches tested positive for the virus, one other player was deemed a close contact, and another received a false positive result. Family members — including one player’s pregnant wife — also fell ill.

No Canucks players remained on the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list Sunday. Nineteen were on the list at the height of the outbreak.

But some of Vancouver’s regular starters remained out of the lineup, including goalie Thatcher Demko, defenceman Nate Schmidt and forwards Tyler Motte and Jake Virtanen.

Toronto nearly sealed the game in the dying seconds of regulation.

Matthews dished a short pass to Mitch Marner in tight and the right-winger sailed a shot off the crossbar and post with about 20 seconds left on the clock. The goal was waved off on the ice but went to a video review.

The Leafs held a 2-1 lead going into the third period but Hoglander tied it up at 12:03 in the frame. Defenceman Jalen Chatfield sliced Hoglander a crisp pass and the rookie popped it in for his eighth of the year; Chatfield’s assist on the play was his first NHL point.

Hoglander celebrated with a big fist pump and Holtby came out of his net to join the celebratory glove taps at the Canucks’ bench.

With just under five minutes to go, it briefly appeared as though Vancouver had taken the lead when forward Jayce Hawryluk rang a shot off the crossbar. He celebrated as though the puck had gone in but it was quickly waved off by the officials and the play continued.

Toronto’s Zach Hyman leaves with injury

A nasty hit 10 minutes into the second period saw both sides lose a key piece.

Canucks defenceman Alex Edler took out Zach Hyman in front of the Leafs’ bench. The left-winger dropped hard to the ice and stayed down for several minutes before the play ended and a trainer came to his aide. Hyman went directly to the locker room and did not return to the game.

The Leafs’ bench vocally expressed their displeasure with the play and it was reviewed, with officials determining Edler had committed a knee-on-knee hit. He was handed a five-minute major and a game misconduct.

Holtby kept the Canucks in the game during the ensuing penalty, at one point going from post to post to make a diving glove stop on Alex Galchenyuk.

Leafs’ Auston Matthews scores 33rd goal

Toronto finally beat Holtby with 19 seconds left in the man advantage. Matthews collected a pass from Nylander as he powered to the net and chipped it up over Holtby’s shoulder, hitting the crossbar on the way in.

It was the star centre’s league-leading 33rd goal of the season.

The Canucks responded just 86 seconds later. Horvat streaked into the Leafs’ zone and unleashed a blast from the right faceoff dot, slashing Toronto’s lead to 2-1 with his 15th goal of the year.

The Leafs took an early lead Sunday following a bobbled Canucks pass in the neutral zone. The puck ricocheted off Brock Boeser’s stick and was quickly gobbled up by Tavares for an odd-man rush the other way. Tavares dishes it to Nylander, who ripped a shot past Holtby to open the scoring 3:45 into the first.

The goal was Nylander’s 14th of the season and the 100th of his NHL career. The 24-year-old right-winger returned to the lineup Sunday after missing five games due to COVID-19 protocols.

The Leafs and Canucks will meet again in Vancouver on Tuesday.

WATCH | CBC Sports’ Rob Pizzo recaps Week 13 in NHL North Division:

In our weekly segment, Rob Pizzo catches you up on the week that was in the all-Canadian division in the NHL. 3:56

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