BASS Coast Health CEO Jan Child has issued an appeal to local people wanting to get tested, after confirmation of a positive COVID-19 at Phillip Island, to be patient.
Those who have been at a Tier 1 and Tier 2 site should get tested immediately.
Those who have symptoms should also get tested immediately.
“But those who might just be anxious, who haven’t been to any of the exposure sites, or who don’t have symptoms, could they please wait to get tested for a few days,” Ms Child said today while visiting the drive-through testing site at Cowes.
“Obviously, we’re the busiest here at Cowes today, with what looks to be a six-hour wait.
“We’ve got additional staff coming in from Warragul, Sale, the Latrobe Valley, the city and from Foster but we do ask people to be as patient as they can be while we work through this.
“We’ve had a few people getting upset and frustrated and we understand that but it’s not helpful.”
Ms Child said Bass Coast Health and its testing and vaccination staff were also impacted by the number of exposure sites at Phillip Island and San Remo as a result of the attendance at these venues by a positive case from Melbourne’s north-eastern suburbs.
“We’ve lost about 28 staff, which is a lot for us, which is another reason why we have had to call staff in from other areas.”
Ms Child said the two main testing centres, at the Wonthaggi Hospital and the Cowes Transit Centre, would be open beyond the advertised 5pm (until dark) operating two drive-through lines and four stations but she acknowledged it would take time.
“The reality is, it will be a miracle if we come out of this without any local cases so it’s most important that we do the right things at this initial stage.”
Ms Child repeated the request that those who either didn’t have symptoms or weren’t at local exposure sites at the times advertised, to delay getting a test until local testing sites could work through the priority testing.
Meanwhile, the Bass Coast Shire Council had a briefing on Friday where serious concerns were raised about the likely impact on the local community as a result of its extensive exposure to the Delta strain.
“Being a popular visitor location, we always knew this was a danger for us, but we now have to follow the directions given to us by the health authorities,” said Bass Coast Mayor Cr Brett Tessari.
“We have offered any help we can to Bass Coast Health providing traffic control and cleaning as required but it’s also important that people continue to isolate and do all the right things.
“It’s also important that you continue to communicate with elderly parents and friends, mindful that it’s difficult to continue to be in isolation.”
Cr Tessari said he didn’t know what would happen in regional Victoria, but he believed there likely be no early reprieve.
Since the visit to Phillip Island on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday; July 12, 13, 14 and 15, a large number of exposure sites has been notified. Deep cleaning is presenting going on at these sites and Department of Health officials are on site.
Coles Cowes is temporarily closed as a Tier 1 site and also Woolworths Cowes as a precaution.
Here is a list of the exposure sites:
* Cowes: Phillip Island Bakery, 57-59 Thompson Avenue, Cowes 13/07/2021 1:00pm – 1:45pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2 – Get tested urgently and isolate until you have a negative result.
* Cowes: North Pier Hotel (Main Building, Ground Floor), 5 The Esplanade, Cowes. 12/07/2021 7:22pm – 10:47pm. Case attended venue. Tier 1 – Get tested immediately and quarantine for 14 days from exposure. Anyone who has visited this location during these times must get tested immediately and quarantine for 14 days from the exposure.
* Cowes: Phillip Island Coffee Co, 1/29 Thompson Avenue, Cowes 14/07/2021 9:10am – 9:50am. Case attended venue. Tier 2 site.
* Cowes: A Maze N Things Theme Park, 1805 Phillip Island Road Cowes 14/07/2021 3:46pm – 4:48pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2.
* Cowes: G’Day Tiger, 3/34 Thompson Avenue, Cowes 13/07/2021 9:16am – 10:24am. Case attended venue. Tier 2.
* Cowes: Coles Cowes, Cnr Church Street & Thompson Ave, Cowes. 12/07/2021 4:30pm – 5:30pm. Case attended venue. Tier 1 site.
* Cowes: The Jolly Lolly Trolley, 25 Thompson Ave, Cowes. 14/07/2021 3:24pm – 4:05pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2.
* Cowes: Phillip Island Ten Pin Bowling and Entertainment, 91-97 Settlement Rd, Cowes 14/07/2021 1:15pm – 3:45pm. Case attended venue. Tier 1.
* Cowes: Grumpys Crazy Golf, 152 Thompson Ave, Cowes. 14/07/2021 11:00am – 12:45pm. Case attended venue. Tier 1.
* Newhaven: Phillip Island Chocolate Factory, 930 Phillip Island Road, Newhaven 13/07/2021 2:57pm – 3:35pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2 – Get tested urgently and isolate until you have a negative result.
* San Remo: Porter Fresh Poke Bowls, 117 Marine Parade, San Remo. 15/07/2021 10:00am – 10:30am. Case attended venue. Tier 1 – Get tested immediately and quarantine for 14 days from exposure.
* San Remo: San Remo Fisherman’s Co-op, 170 Marine Parade, San Remo. 14/07/2021 6:15pm – 7:21pm. Case attended venue. Tier 1 – Get tested immediately and quarantine for 14 days from exposure.
* Summerlands: The Nobbies, Phillip Island Nature Parks, 1320 Ventnor Road, Summerlands. 13/07/2021 4:37pm – 5:10pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2 – Get tested urgently and isolate until you have a negative result.
* Summerlands, The Nobbies, Phillip Island Nature Parks, 1320 Ventnor Road, Summerlands. 12/07/2021 3:35pm – 4:20pm. Case attended venue. Tier 2 – Get tested urgently and isolate until you have a negative result.