Lockdowns don't 'crush' anything: with a COVID outbreak every 12 days this year, this is how each state responded

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Infectious disease experts are calling for a less panicked response to small outbreaks after an analysis revealed two-thirds of the past 17 breaches have been managed without a lockdown.
"What you're doing in effect is you're bringing lockdown in, but you're doing it for the people who have a real risk of being exposed," she said. "You affect 3000 people instead of a city of six million but you're actually targeting the people who are a measurable risk." The third ring strategy was used during the Holiday Inn outbreak in Melbourne, when a returned traveller in hotel quarantine infected several people. Professor Catherine Bennett, chair of epidemiology at Deakin University. Credit:Jason South The decision to plunge Victoria into a five-day stay-at-home order was made five days later, after 13 cases with known sources had been detected in the community.

"I couldn't believe we went into lockdown because we already had contacts-of-contacts tracing and on top of that, we called every potential exposure site a tier 1 exposure site (which requires people to isolate for 14 days)," Professor Bennett said. "That should be enough, that's already two safety nets. "I think to go beyond that to an actual lockdown, there has to be multiple cases in the community you can't link." The Holiday Inn cluster was extinguished at 22 cases, with no new cases being detected outside those already identified as contacts. Commuters returning to Melbourne CBD after February's five-day lockdown. Credit:Photo: Scott McNaughton

Curtin University infectious disease expert Archie Clements said a government's response to an outbreak was dependent on a number of considerations, including the viral strain, a case's movements in the community and whether the source of their infection is known. "[If it's a mystery case] that…
Heather McNeill
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