COVID-19 Update – 136 cases, new restrictions for Cumberland and Blacktown as situation declared “national emergency” – Friday, 23 July 2021

NSW recorded 136 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.

“The crisis Cabinet meeting of the New South Wales government met this morning at 8am, when Dr Chant and her team advised us that the situation that exists now in New South Wales, namely around south-western and now Western Sydney suburbs, is regarded as a national emergency.” – Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

Of these locally acquired cases, 77 are linked to a known case or cluster – 65 are household contacts and 12 are close contacts – and the source of infection for 59 cases is under investigation.

Fifty-three cases were in isolation throughout their infectious period and 17 cases were in isolation for part of their infectious period. Fifty-three cases were infectious in the community, and the isolation status of 13 cases remains under investigation.

Five new overseas-acquired cases were recorded in the 24 hours to 8pm last night. The total number of cases in NSW since the beginning of the pandemic is now 7,303.

There have been 1,782 locally acquired cases reported since 16 June 2021, when the first case in the Bondi cluster was reported.

There are currently 137 COVID-19 cases admitted to hospital, with 32 people in intensive care, 14 of whom require ventilation.

A record 86,620 COVID-19 tests were reported to 8pm last night, compared with the previous day’s total of 85,185. This is the third day in a row NSW testing records have been broken, and we thank the community for coming forward in such high numbers.

NSW Health administered a new daily record 25,610 COVID-19 vaccines in the 24 hours to 8pm last night, including 8,326 at the vaccination centre at Sydney Olympic Park.

The total number of vaccines administered in NSW is now 3,293,898, with 1,284,474 doses administered by NSW Health to 8pm last night and 2,009,424 administered by the GP network and other providers to 11.59pm on Wednesday 21 July 2021.

To book your COVID-19 vaccination, go to or visit the Australian Government’s Vaccine Eligibility Checker online.

Of the 136 locally acquired cases reported to 8pm last night, 62 are from South Western Sydney Local Health District (LHD), 29 are from Western Sydney LHD, 28 are from Sydney LHD, 14 are from South Eastern Sydney LHD, two are from Northern Sydney LHD and one is from Nepean Blue Mountains LHD.

New restrictions for Cumberland and Blacktown Local Government Areas

Due to the emergence of further cases of community transmission in Sydney’s west and south-west, people living in the Cumberland and Blacktown Local Government Areas (LGAs) will only be allowed to leave their LGA for work if they are an authorised worker.

More here: Authorised workers and surveillance testing requirements for western Sydney

Surveillance testing every 72 hours applies to all authorised workers who live in the Fairfield LGA and, starting from midnight tonight, health and aged care workers who live in the Canterbury Bankstown LGA.

From 12.01am today, a person who lives in the Canterbury-Bankstown LGA can only work in health or aged care outside of the LGA if they have been tested for COVID-19 in the previous 72 hours. These workers include all those who work in aged care facilities and those who provide health services or ancillary or support services, including cleaners, cooks, and security providers.

Sewage detection in the Hills

NSW Health’s ongoing sewage surveillance program has detected fragments of the virus that causes COVID-19 at sewage treatment plants at West Lindfield and Byron Bay, where there are no known cases.

It is the first ever detection at the West Lindfield sewage treatment plant, which serves almost 118,000 people in the suburbs of Denistone, Denistone West, Epping, Dundas Valley, Cheltenham, Carlingford, West Pennant Hills, Beecroft, Denistone East, Macquarie Park, Marsfield, Roseville, Lindfield, Normanhurst, Warrawee, West Pymble, Pymble, Gordon, North Epping, Turramurra, South Turramurra, Killara, Pennant Hills, Eastwood, Thornleigh and Wahroonga.

It is the first detection this year at the Byron Bay sewage treatment plant, which serves about 19,000 people in Byron Bay, Wategos, Suffolk Park, Sunrise and Broken Head.

Everyone in these areas are asked to be especially vigilant for symptoms, and if they appear, to immediately come forward for testing and isolate until a negative result is received. If symptoms appear again, please be tested and isolate again.

People in the Greater Sydney region, including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour, and the Orange, Blayney or Cabonne LGAs are reminded they must not leave home without a reasonable excuse. Taking a holiday is not a reasonable excuse.

Get tested

If you are directed to get tested for COVID‑19 or self-isolate at any time, you must follow the rules whether or not the venue or exposure setting is listed on the NSW Health website.

It remains vital that anyone who has any symptoms or is a close or casual contact of a person with COVID-19, isolates and is tested immediately. When testing clinics are busy, please ensure you stay in line, identify yourself to staff and tell them that you have symptoms or are a contact of a case.

Please check the NSW Government website regularly, and follow the relevant health advice if you have attended a venue of concern or travelled on a public transport route at the same time as a confirmed case of COVID-19. This list is being updated regularly as case investigations proceed.

There are 39 testing clinics in western Sydney today and more than 410 COVID-19 testing locations across NSW, many of which are open seven days a week.

To find your nearest clinic visit COVID-19 testing clinics or contact your GP.