As the ACT continues to battle the spread of COVID-19, an unsuspecting contributor to our daily case numbers and exposure sites has been revealed.

Without knowing they’re infectious, a number of locals have been making pit stops before and after receiving a COVID test, further spreading the Delta variant across Canberra.

ACT Deputy Chief Health Officer Dr. Vanessa Johnston has stressed the importance of going directly to and from COVID testing sites and said any trips in between could worsen the ACT’s COVID situation.

“You may think that a quick trip through a drive through or a quick stop off at Woolworths with a mask is without risk but that’s not the case…”

“It comes with risk and will potentially be listed as another exposure location, another lot of work that our site liaison officers need to do and risk assessing that site and communicating that to people that’ve been there at the same time as you, if it is subsequently found that you test positive after having the test.”

But that’s not the only case of local’s breaching Public Health Orders while waiting for test results.

ACT Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said a number of locals have also been attending healthcare appointments without informing staff they’re awaiting COVID results.

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“This is not okay. This puts our staff and other patients at risk.”

Instead, Canberrans needing health care while awaiting a COVID test result should complete a screening tool provided by hospital and health services to determine whether or not it is safe for an in-person appointment.

Ms. Stephen-Smith said it is vital locals fill this out before attending any appointments.

“Please complete this screen tool honestly. You will not be denied urgent care because you are awaiting a test result. However, the facilities do need to know before you arrive so that they can put the necessary precautions in place to keep everyone safe.”