Victorian government nurses have descended on an Melbourne townhouse complex after concerns were raised over potential transmission between the buildings.
Health Minister Martin Foley said on Monday contact tracing teams had identified two positive cases lived in the same low rise townhouse complex in Southbank.
Mr Foley said a case that tested positive on Saturday lived in the same complex as a aged care worker at Arcare Maidstone who also tested positive.
“There was reason to believe, both from genomic sequencing and from the epidemiology of these cases, possible exposure sites around a smaller number of internal facilities,” he said.
“Health contacted residents of this complex to inform them of that potential transmission risk and have asked them to isolate.
“Department of Health specialist nurses were on site (on Monday) morning working with the residents and a pop-up testing facility was established near the facility to make sure that we could make it as easy as possible for people to get tested.
“Rather than wait for the community to come to the contact tracers and the testing facility, local public health took the view that they should go to them, and I think that is a good thing.”
Mr Foley said most residents would only be required to isolate until they test negative as it was a tier 2 exposure site, but a smaller number would need to quarantine for the full 14 days.
He said there were just over 100 townhouses in the complex.
“An SMS went out too everyone on the list last night … and a door knocking and testing is well underway,” he said.
“It’s quite a large area with multiple entry points and car parks.
“But we took the view if we want to run down these last few chains of transmissions, and we’ve got the ability to take the services and the engagement to that community, we should, because that will get the job done quicker.”
Mr Foley could not say what the shared facilities with the transmission risk were on Monday morning, only that they were not laundries.
When asked if an apartment or townhouse complex should be listed as an exposure site every time there was a positive case, the Health Minister said it depended on the circumstances.
“We take the advice of the public health team who investigate each set of circumstances based on the merit of how things work out on the site,” he said.
The complex is not currently on the list of public exposure sites.
Victoria recorded two new locally acquired Covid-19 cases on Monday, both children and both linked to known outbreaks.
Mr Foley said Monday’s numbers were a “relatively positive outcome” and a further easing of restrictions for Melbourne and regional Victoria later this week were still on track.