Scrapped mandates to skew COVID case tally

Australia’s latest COVID-19 data could differ from actual case numbers after some states scrapped mandatory reporting of tests.

People in Victoria and NSW are no longer required to log their positive rapid antigen tests with state authorities.

The changes came into effect in Victoria a fortnight ago and in NSW last Friday.

The lack of mandates could alter the latest weekly COVID-19 figures, to be reported later on Friday morning.

Each state and territory, as well as the federal health department, are only required to publicly share COVID-19 data around cases, deaths and hospitalisations once a week.

Meanwhile, the West Australian government has announced it will close four public COVID-19 testing clinics as demand wanes for PCR tests.

The clinics at Rockingham General Hospital, Royal Perth Hospital, Broome Health Campus and the Bunbury health campus will all be shut down by October 28.

Public COVID-19 clinics at Joondalup and Murdoch will remain open.

WA Chief Health Officer Andrew Roberston is instead encouraging residents to use a rapid antigen test if they have COVID-19 symptoms.

“RATs are a safe, convenient and fast option to test for COVID-19,” Dr Roberston said in a statement.


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