A Christmas in July party at an aged care home has turned into a Delta ‘superspreader’ event after 20 cases were linked to the gathering.
NSW Health officials said on Monday 18 residents and two staff members at the Wyoming Residential Aged Care Facility in Summer Hill in Sydney’s inner-west had tested positive to Covid-19.
The revelation came as New South Wales recorded 207 locally-acquired coronavirus cases on Monday and the death of a man in his 90s in Sydney’s south-west from the virus – the 15th Covid-19 fatality during the state’s latest outbreak.
An employee at the home first tested positive to the virus on July 27 – with the virus then spreading rapidly through a party held inside the aged care facility.
Eighteen residents and two staff members at the Wyoming Residential Aged Care Facility (pictured) in Summer Hill in Sydney’s inner-west have tested positive to Covid-19. Pictured is a masked pedestrian outside the home on Monday
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said 32 residents had been taken to hospital who either tested positive to the virus or were deemed a close contact.
Mr Hazzard said only residents living on the top floor of the care home were exposed to Covid-19.
‘I understand that the actual numbers are believed to have come from a super-spreading event that occurred in the aged care facility,’ he said.
‘Sometimes it is not a good idea to have Christmas in July right in the middle of a pandemic but I do understand that it is an effort to try and provide entertainment and to support to residents and those things have to be decided by the aged care facilities.’
The outbreak was first detected on July 27 when a partially-vaccinated staff member at the home, who was asymptomatic, tested positive to Covid-19.
The home has been locked down to all visitors and residents still in the home are in self-isolation, a spokesman for the home said.
Staff are pictured arriving at the Hardi Nursing Home in Summer Hill in Sydney’s inner-west on Monday
The spokesman said 80 per cent of the facility’s 65 residents and 75 per cent of its 60 staff were fully vaccinated.
‘Twelve residents have been identified as positive for Covid-19,’ a Wyoming Nursing Home spokesman said.
‘They have been transferred to hospital as a precaution and the staff member, as well as her close contacts, are now in isolation.’
The home has been locked down to all visitors and residents still in the home are in self-isolation, the spokesman said.
‘Expert infection prevention and control staff, infectious diseases staff as well as clinical staff are on site to ensure adherence to strict infection control processes including correct personal protective equipment to ensure the safety of residents and staff,’ the home said in a statement
NSW Deputy Chief Health Officer Dr Jeremy McNulty on Sunday announced several cases have been identified across aged care facilities, impacting Australia’s most vulnerable age groups.