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Urgent health alert as Covid-19 fragments are found in wastewater in three regional Victorian towns

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Residents in three Victorian towns have been urged to get tested for Covid-19 after the virus was detected in wastewater.

An alert has been issued for Gisborne, Leongatha and Hamilton after Covid-19 was detected in wastewater at the Leongatha wastewater treatment plant on January 19.

Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) advised anyone with symptoms to get tested for the virus, even if they are ‘mild’. 

People from three Victorian towns have been urged to get tested for Covid after the virus was detected in wastewater. Pictured: Hydrographer Andrew Lamb taking samples from a sewer in Victoria, May 2020

 People from three Victorian towns have been urged to get tested for Covid after the virus was detected in wastewater. Pictured: Hydrographer Andrew Lamb taking samples from a sewer in Victoria, May 2020

Residents of Gisborne in the Macedon Ranges, Leongatha in Gippsland and Hamilton, south-west of Victoria, have been alerted to get tested if they have even 'mild' symptoms (Stock)

Residents of Gisborne in the Macedon Ranges, Leongatha in Gippsland and Hamilton, south-west of Victoria, have been alerted to get tested if they have even ‘mild’ symptoms (Stock)

‘Anyone who lives in or has visited Gisborne from January 24 to 26, Hamilton from January 25 to 27 or Leongatha from January 17 to 19, is urged to get tested if they have any symptoms of coronavirus, however mild,’ DHHS said in a statement. 

DHHS said the initial testing of the Leongatha wastewater treatment plant showed a ‘weak result’ but has since been confirmed with independent testing. 

‘The detection of viral fragments was unexpected given there had been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in these communities at the time,’ DHHS said.

‘But it can take several weeks for someone to stop shedding the virus.’

The wastewater result might be a sign there has been positive cases.   

Covid was detected in wastewater at the Leongatha wastewater treatment plant on January 19. Pictured: People wearing masks on December 31, 2020 in Melbourne

Covid was detected in wastewater at the Leongatha wastewater treatment plant on January 19. Pictured: People wearing masks on December 31, 2020 in Melbourne

IMPACTED VIC TOWNS AND DATES 

Leongatha, south-west of Melbourne: January 17 – 19 

Gisborne in the Macedon Ranges:  January 24 – 26

Hamilton in Gippsland: January 25 – 27 

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This post was first published on DailyMail.

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