The Informer: Clusters, Karens and all sorts of COVID connotations

 Guide Dogs Victoria boss Karen Hayes wants the
Guide Dogs Victoria boss Karen Hayes wants the "good Karens" to unite against her "less responsible" namesakes.

There's a whole new sub-language we've added to the lexicon this year and it's all coronavirus-related.

For many of us the word cluster had little medical significance eight months ago. Now it's a straight up warning for places you need to avoid at all costs. The clusters have names relating back to their origins: restaurants, pubs, clubs and sadly, even funerals.

Now there might be a few things that link those entities but from a non-epidemiologist point-of-view, I'd take a stab that people gathering in confined spaces is one of them.

Three schools in the Bendigo region have closed in response to positive tests to COVID-19; new cases have been revealed in the NSW Hunter region linked back to a Port Stephens cluster; a businessman and his partner who have tested positive have links to a Sydney restaurant while aged-care facilities, well, that's self explanatory, sadly.

And then there's Queensland.

In keeping with its hardline tradition, the state has added another location to its no-go zone - and it's the Greater Sydney region. Its residents join the people of Liverpool, Campbelltown and Fairfield city not welcome in the sunshine state for now.

But then there's a homegrown matter of mammoth proportions facing task Queensland contract tracers. Two teenagers, who allegedly failed to declare they visited Melbourne, tested positive to coronavirus eight days after returning home to Queensland.

It prompted hundreds of people to line-up for COVID-19 testing and the "cluster" associated to the teens now stands at three.

Businesses in the Logan shire are now on full alert for a major outbreak with shopping centres, restaurants, a school and a church closed for 48 hours for deep cleans.

Queensland's Chief Health Officer, Jeannette Young, said the pair had been "out and about" for eight days - with symptoms.

"I am very, very disappointed, I think it was reckless," she said.

The national death toll jumped to 176 today while almost 9500 people have recovered.

It can't be all doom and gloom and despite the apparent rise of "CoronaKarens" we must say thanks to the boss of Guide Dogs Victoria Karen Hayes for her input today. She reckons she's one of the "good Karens" - we'll let you decide.

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This story Clusters, Karens and all sorts of COVID connotations first appeared on The Canberra Times.