One more COVID-19 case in Forbes as mask rule reintroduced

One more COVID-19 case in Forbes as mask rule reintroduced

There has been one new case of COVID-19 detected in Forbes - six days after our last single case was detected.

Four cases have been reported in the Parkes shire in between.

Forbes' case is one of 65 in the Western NSW Local Health District detected to 8pm Wednesday and 5715 across NSW.

There are now 347 COVID-19 cases in hospital, with 45 in intensive care. Fourteen require ventilation.

The NSW Government has reintroduced some of the requirements that had recently been lifted. The adjustments are:

  • Masks will be compulsory in all indoor non-residential settings, including for hospitality staff and in offices, unless eating or drinking from 12.01am Friday, 24 December
  • QR code check-ins will be compulsory, including for hospitality and retail from 12.01am Monday, 27 December 2021
  • Hospitality venues, including pubs, clubs, restaurants and cafes will move to 1 person per 2 sqm rule indoors, with no density limit for outdoor settings from 12.01am Monday, 27 December 2021

All settings will remain in place until Wednesday, 27 January 2022.

QR check-in requirements are a reminder that if you receive a notification you should get tested if you feel unwell. You should also get tested if directed by NSW Health or if you have symptoms.

Reduce mingling where you can including when eating and drinking, work from home where possible and hold events outside.

Rapid-Antigen Test kits will soon be made available for free across the State as an additional testing option and to allow those who need to get a PCR test to do so.

In Western NSW, Local Health District acting chief executive Mark Spittal has called for people to be patient and respectful with health staff.

"Every single one of our staff have been under incredible pressure for almost two years as a result of the pandemic. They deserve nothing but respect and gratitude," Mr Spittal said.

"Unfortunately, some people are frustrated about the time it's taking for COVID-19 test results to come back and they are taking that out on our staff and that is not acceptable.

"If you are waiting for a result, don't call the health service where you were tested - the staff there can't make your results come back any faster.

"Right now, it's likely that test results will take at least 72 hours to come back and in some cases it will be longer. We all wish it could be faster than that but right now there is a peak in demand that all service providers are doing their best to keep pace with.

"Regardless of why you're interacting with our team, please show some patience and respect because they are doing the absolute best job they can for you and for all of the communities in our District.

"We understand waiting times can be frustrating but I guarantee you that the person in front of you in the hospital, or who answered the phone when you called, is only trying to help. Do not take your frustration out on them."

  • COVID testing is available through Laverty Pathology in Forbes from 10am to 2pm weekdays. This service will be closed from Christmas Day through to January 4.
  • COVID testing is available at Cheney Park with entry from Station Street in Parkes from 9am to midday daily. This service is closed Christmas Day.