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Australia Rate of coronavirus growth in Australia 'very concerning'

16:32  24 march  2020
16:32  24 march  2020 Source:   9news.com.au

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Australia's Chief Medical Officer, Professor Brendan Murphy, says the rate of coronavirus growth is "very concerning".

"We are very worried about the rate of rise," he said in a press conference with Prime Minister Scott Morrison tonight.

"It is a very, very steep growth and it's very concerning."

READ MORE: Coronavirus live updates

As Mr Morrison revealed a raft of new restrictions to slow the virus in Australia, Prof Murphy said it was crucial to crack down on travellers immediately self-isolating when they arrive in the country.

Chris Uhlmann wearing a suit and tie: The Prime Minister has announced a new list of restricted venues and activities, to come into effect tomorrow at midnight. © Provided by 9News.com.au The Prime Minister has announced a new list of restricted venues and activities, to come into effect tomorrow at midnight.

"So, people are being told they are a positive case and going into the chemist or the supermarket on the way home," he said.

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'The Government acknowledges the concerns of Australians who are in Hubei Province in China and the concerns of their families and friends He became the first confirmed case of coronavirus in Australia on Saturday morning and is now in quarantined isolation at Monash Hospital in Clayton in

Researchers currently think that between five and 40 coronavirus cases in 1,000 will result in death, with a best guess of nine in 1,000 or about 1%. On Sunday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the UK government's " very best assessment" was that the mortality rate was "2% or, likely, lower".

"If you are isolating because you are a positive case or you're a contact, you go home and you isolate and you obey those rules.

"That is a really, really important part of the control."

Prof Murphy stressed that the COVID-19 virus would "be with us for some time".

"We have to all think about avoiding any unnecessary interactions where you are close to someone and could place them at risk," he said.

"These measures are really draconian. We know that. But if we're going to control community transmission, we have to stop the capacity of this virus from spreading from person to person."

a man wearing a suit and tie smiling and looking at the camera: Prof Murphy stressed that the COVID-19 virus would © AAP Prof Murphy stressed that the COVID-19 virus would

Mr Morrison tonight warned Australia faces one of its toughest years as he extended restrictions on social distancing. Despite the restrictions, the Prime Minister stopped short of school closures, a move Prof Murphy backed.

"There is no evidence we have a major transmission amongst school children," he said.

"We don't know whether that might occur. We do know that children do not, in general get symptomatic disease.

"Of course, if there was an outbreak in a school you would close the school until you sorted out the direct contacts and quarantine all of those contacts."

Australia has more than 2000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with more than 420 new cases in the past 24 hours.

Rate of coronavirus infection slows in NSW as authorities urge public to maintain social distancing .
The NSW Health Minister has repeated pleas for the public to stick to social distancing measures as the number of new infections in the state drops to 174 in the last 24 hours, down from 212 the previous day. The number of new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours in New South Wales has risen by 174, down considerably on the previous day's increase of 212 cases. The total number of confirmed cases is now at 1,791, with 24 people being treated in intensive care. The drop in the rate of infections saw NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard repeat pleas for the public to stick to social distancing rules.

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