Brock calls for SA Health to provide more information on confirmed coronavirus cases

Independent Frome MP Geoff Brock is calling for SA Health to provide more information on confirmed coronavirus cases.
Independent Frome MP Geoff Brock is calling for SA Health to provide more information on confirmed coronavirus cases.
MAP: Regional South Australia heat map as provided by SA Health. Map shows unnamed council areas and colour grading for confirmed cases.

MAP: Regional South Australia heat map as provided by SA Health. Map shows unnamed council areas and colour grading for confirmed cases.

Residents should be given more information about coronavirus "hotspots" to enable them to avoid risk of infection, according to Geoff Brock.

The Independent Frome MP said that SA Health had finally released a heat map of confirmed cases for the state, but still failed to provide enough detailed information to the public.

Mr Brock called on the agency to release a "live" map with more up-to-date and detailed information.

"The heat map shows blocks of colour for un-named council areas throughout the state, with grades of yellow through to orange, red and burgundy," he said.

"Residents would need to be familiar with their council boundaries and how they look on a map to identify whether their region had any confirmed cases."

He said the grades of yellow were difficult to distinguish.

Mr Brock said he was not asking for information which could identify those who had been infected, but that the community deserved to know accurate figures of cases in their region.

"As far as I can make out, there have been between one to four cases in each of the Port Pirie, Wakefield and Clare and Gilbert Valleys Council areas with none in the Northern Areas Council," he said.

He wants to reassure the community he is maintaining contact with the agency and is working with Mayor Leon Stephens to identify infection rates in his electorate.

"Although SA Health have confirmed cases in our region, these patients are being closely monitored and any contacts between them and the community are being tracked to help ensure the health of everyone and those they may have interacted with," he said.

Residents are asked to continue to do their bit and help slow the spread of the coronavirus by minimising travel and staying at home over the Easter break.

Mr Brock is also encouraging those who are considered vulnerable - anyone aged over 70 or with health conditions - to stay at home in self-isolation.

The community is asked to remain calm during this time and continue to maintain hygienic practices and social distancing.

"Do not panic. If everyone keeps doing the right thing, we will get through this," he said.

He hopes that by providing residents with more accurate information, it will eliminate rumours and fear within the community.

"People are scared and uncertain and there are so many rumours which are often worse than the truth," he said.

"If people knew there were confirmed cases in particular locations, they would take more care and it would be a necessary wake-up call for those who have not taken this pandemic as seriously as they should.

"From here on in we need to have SA Health supply accurate and timely information and to be open and transparent because we are all in this together."

In a press conference SA Health chief public health officer Dr Nicole Spurrier said anything which gives the South Australian population more information is useful.

"If we put on [the map] where people are infected we would be taking over 100 out because they were on a cruise ship," she said.

"We have made the decision on what we thought would be the most informative for the public.

"We do not want to be hiding information, we want to make sure people are informed about the numbers and the distribution."

The Recorder is seeking comment from the Health Minister Stephen Wade.

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