COVID-19 Update – 325 of 882 new cases in western Sydney, two deaths, HSC delayed, plan for schools to reopen in October – Friday 27 August 2021

NSW recorded 882 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.

Three new cases were acquired overseas in the 24 hours to 8pm last night, and ten previously reported cases have been excluded following further investigation. The total number of cases in NSW since the beginning of the pandemic is 22,157.

Of the 882 locally acquired cases reported to 8pm last night, 325 are from Western Sydney Local Health District (LHD), 265 are from South Western Sydney LHD, 82 are from Sydney LHD, 60 are from Nepean Blue Mountains LHD, 53 are from South Eastern Sydney LHD 40 are from Western NSW LHD, 17 are from Northern Sydney LHD, nine are from Far West LHD, five are from Illawarra Shoalhaven LHD, two new cases for Hunter New England LHD and 24 cases are yet to be assigned to an LHD.

We continue to see a majority of cases emerging from the western and south-western part of Sydney, and in particular I would like to ask the residents of the following suburbs to again pay extra vigilance to following the public orders, to come forward for testing and to get vaccinated as soon as you can: Merrylands, Guildford, Auburn, Greenacre, Punchbowl and also Condell Park.

NSW Deputy Chief Health Officer Marianne Gale

Sadly, NSW Health has been notified of the deaths of two people who had COVID-19.

As announced yesterday, a man in his 60s from Sydney’s Nepean Blue Mountains District died at Nepean Hospital, after acquiring his infection there earlier this month. His is the third death linked to an outbreak at the hospital.

A man in his 90s from western Sydney died at Concord Hospital, having acquired his infection at Canterbury Hospital. His is the fifth death linked to an outbreak at this hospital.

NSW Health extends its deepest sympathies to their loved ones.

There have been 81 COVID-19 related deaths in NSW since 16 June 2021. There have been 137 in total since the start of the pandemic.

There have been 16,556 locally acquired cases reported since 16 June 2021, when the first case in this outbreak was reported.  

There are currently 767 COVID-19 cases admitted to hospital, with 117 people in intensive care, 47 of whom require ventilation.

There were 118,120 COVID-19 tests reported to 8pm last night, compared with the previous day’s total of 151,272.

NSW Health’s ongoing sewage surveillance program has recently detected fragments of the virus that causes COVID-19 at the sewage treatment plants in Tamworth, Merimbula, Picton and Nyngan.

HSC in November and all students to return to school in Term 4

There will be a staggered return to face-to-face learning from October, HSC exams will be delayed until November and vaccinations for school staff will be mandatory based on the return to school plan released by the NSW Government today.

The Department of Education has developed a plan to bring students back in a COVID-safe way while stay at home orders are still in place – ensuring continuity of education, and protecting student, teacher and community safety.

A staggered return of students to face-to-face learning will begin on Monday 25 October.

Students will return to face-to-face learning with NSW Health approved COVID safe settings on school sites in the following order:

  • From 25 October – Kindergarten and Year 1
  • From 1 NovemberYear 2, 6 and 11
  • From 8 November – Year 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 and 10

Year 12 students are already able to return in a limited way and this will continue for the remainder of Term 3. From 25 October, Year 12 will have full time access to school campuses and their teachers.

If stay at home orders are lifted in an LGA or region before 25 October, all students living or learning in that area will return to face to face learning under the Department’s COVID-safe schools framework.

If cases in certain LGAs increase significantly, learning from home will resume for that LGA until case numbers drop.

HSC exams will be delayed until 9 November with a revised timetable and guidelines for a COVID-safe HSC to be released by NESA in early September. Importantly, the delay of the HSC exams will not disadvantage NSW students when applying to university.

Vaccinations for all school staff across all sectors will be mandatory from 8 November. NSW Health will be providing priority vaccinations at Qudos Bank Arena for school staff the week beginning 6 September.

Early childcare staff will also be able to participate in the priority vaccinations from 6 September. All school and early childcare staff are also encouraged to make use of the GP network to be vaccinated with whatever vaccine is available as soon as possible.

A recent survey of the public school workforce indicated the majority of staff already had at least one dose of a vaccine.

All students eligible for a vaccine will be strongly encouraged by the government to book an appointment.

Students aged 12-15 will also be a priority if they become eligible for a vaccine.

All parents who have not been vaccinated are strongly encouraged to get the vaccine as soon as possible.

Get vaccinated

NSW Health administered 51,955 COVID-19 vaccines in the 24 hours to 8pm last night, including 11,919 at the vaccination centre at Sydney Olympic Park.

The total number of vaccines administered in NSW is now 6,415,464, with 2,355,972 doses administered by NSW Health and 4,059,492 administered by the GP network and other providers.

The Qudos Bank Arena Vaccination Centre is vaccinating anyone aged 16-39 from a local government area of concern. There are 18,500 Pfizer doses daily and bookings are open now. Book here.

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 more than 40 testing clinics in western Sydney and over 450 COVID-19 testing locations across NSW, many of which are open seven days a week. To find your nearest clinic visit here or contact your GP.

To book your COVID-19 vaccination, visit