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March 3, 2021

Sewage clear of COVID-19, say NSW Health

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While sewage testing on the Gold Coast has indicated the presence of SARS-CoV-2, it appears locally there are no traces in the region’s sewage treatment plants (STPs).

NSW Health say on their website they are testing sewage treatment plant locations across NSW, which includes Byron Shire.

A Byron Shire Council spokesperson told The Echo, ‘Council has, for some time, been providing [sewage] water samples to NSW Health’.

According to the latest report from NSW Health (COVID-19 Weekly Surveillance in NSW, ending December 12), it has been 140 days since the last local-transmission case was reported.

Page 17 states that there was no SARS-CoV-2 detected in Byron Shire, Ballina and Tweed from October 10 through to December 12. The water STP samples are yet to be analysed in Byron LGA (local government area) for December 5 to 12.

‘Testing rates [of people with COVID-19 symtoms] have mostly decreased or remained stable for all age groups across all LHDs for the week ending December 12’.

For more info, including a Q&A on the program, visit www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/covid-19/Pages/sewage-surveillance.aspx.


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  1. This article is either wrong or wrong. Oh, it’s just wrong then! You have contradicted yourself in saying that “Page 17 states that there was no SARS-CoV-2 detected in Byron Shire, Ballina and Tweed from October 10 through to December 12. The water STP samples are yet to be analysed in Byron LGA (local government area) for December 5 to 12”, it’s either not been tested and analysed, or it has, and obviously it had NOT been reported on since the week ending November 28. There are NO current reports for any testing having been done on either of the Byron Shire sewage plants in December whatsoever. It is clearly on the NSW Health surveillance site that there are three blank spaces where the Byron results should be. Please rectify your article. Also, please state the name of your Byron Council representative source.


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