THE City of Greater Bendigo has earned the dubious honour of having one of the highest rate of active COVID-19 cases per 100,000 in Victoria.
The surge in case numbers in the past couple of weeks has led Bendigo Health to call on the community to take personal responsibility to halt the spread of respiratory illness as Coronavirus and Influenza cases spike, adding more pressure to the region's health services.
There are more than 1703 active COVID cases in the Bendigo region - over 300 in the past 24 hours. The city recorded 304 further cases of COVID-19 overnight, taking the city's active cases to 1703. There have been 27,549 cases of COVID-19 in Bendigo since the pandemic began.
Bendigo Health Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Daryl Kroschel said Influenza A was also circulating in the community, with significantly higher numbers relative to the last two years.
"Our health service is feeling the impact of lessened restrictions. We have numerous staff on sick leave each day because of respiratory illness and we are dealing with sicker patients, some of whom require acute care," he said.
"We want you to think about wearing a mask when appropriate, maintaining physical distance, hand hygiene and exercise a common sense approach in public settings."
Dr Kroschel said COVID cases were increasing among 60 plus year-olds, highlighting the waning immunity after the third dose.
"The case numbers are high but they're likely a lot higher because we do know there's significant underreporting of COVID cases currently," he said.
Dr Kroschel said the latest health information should encourage those who are eligible for their winter COVID booster to book their fourth dose in addition to their annual flu vaccination.
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