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COVID-19 cases continue to rise

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WHITTLESEA leaders have continued calls for residents to be tested for COVID-19 after a spike in cases during the past week.

After a State Government announcement that Whittlesea would be one of 12 Victorian municipalities targeted for testing, the region has seen a spike of at least 10 active cases in the past week.

As of Monday afternoon, Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) data showed Whittlesea had 16 active cases and a total of 58 since the pandemic began.

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A week earlier the region had only six active cases.

Only the municipalities of Hume, Brimbank, Moonee Valley and Moreland had higher numbers of active cases, while Casey also had 16.

On Friday the DHHS said three new cases of the virus were linked to a social gathering in Wollert.

One of the affected people is a student at Epping’s St Monica’s College, and worked at McDonald’s in Mill Park while infectious.

The DHHS said the risk of anyone who visited the McDonald’s contracting coronavirus was ‘very low’.

More than 70 coronavirus cases were diagnosed in Victoria on Sunday.

Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green urged her constituents to get tested if they showed any symptoms of the virus, including fever, chills or sweats, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose, and loss of sense of smell.

“Even if you only have mild symptoms, you should go get tested,” she said.

“The test takes around a minute and involves a swab from the back of your throat and nose.”

Ms Green said Whittlesea was still not considered a COVID-19 hotspot by the government and people should be vigilant, but not alarmed.

The City of Whittlesea website said targeted testing would begin in Epping this week, with a State Government community-engagement team set to speak to residents in local shopping areas and going door-to-door with health advice.

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