ORANGE'S seven-day lockdown is set to be lifted following a week's worth of COVID testing, drive-through line-ups and no new positive cases.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian stopped short of making the announcement at her daily press conference in Sydney, but said the locked down local government areas of Orange, Blayney and Cabonne can look forward to "positive news" later on Tuesday, with a Western NSW Local Health District announcement expected this afternoon.
"Health advice is promising," Ms Berejiklian said, the seven-day timeframe originally outlined spanning from July 21 to midnight, July 27.
TESTING RATES ACROSS LGAs OF ORANGE, CABONNE AND BLAYNEY DURING LOCKDOWN
"We'll have a message out later today. The community can look forward to positive news."
Around 11,000 tests, representing about 17 per cent of the population, have been conducted across the main areas of concern - the LGAs of Cabonne, Orange and Blayney - in the seven days after in was confirmed a positive case was active in Orange's north and east while infectious in the community.
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Orange was thrown into lockdown at 12.01am on July 21, and no new cases of COVID-19 were picked up despite the overwhelming response from the public, who lined up for hours on the opening day to get tested.
Testing numbers dwindled over the course of the week-long lockdown, and on Monday - day six of the lockdown - Western NSW Local Health District boss Scott McLachlan indicated that low testing rate might work against the region when health officials and the NSW Government looks at lifting the lockdown.
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But the premier said good news was imminent, despite, as of Tuesday, 172 new cases of COVID-19 emerging in Sydney, 60 of those being infectious in the community.
On top of no new cases picked up across Blayney, Cabonne and Orange, Member for Orange Phil Donato said he's been advised sewage testing results have not found the presence of COVID in any of the LGAs highlighted, too.
"I am super proud of our communities and the way we have responded to the call for testing and compliance," Mr Donato said.
Lockdown Eve - July 20
A confirmed case of COVID-19 emerges in the Cabonne Local Government Area and it's revealed, while infectious, that case was active in the community on July 16 and July 17.
Five locations across Orange are identified as exposure sites before health officials and the NSW Government throw the Orange, Blayney and Cabonne LGAs - totaling a population of around 60,000 people - into a snap, seven-day lockdown.
Day One - July 21
Thousands of Orange residents waited in line for COVID-19 testing on Wednesday at the Orange Showground and at Wade Park - the first day of the city and the region's week-long lockdown.
Around seven per cent of the combined population from Parkes, Blayney, Cabonne and Orange got tested on the opening day of the lockdown.
Another drive-through testing clinic is opened the old Bunnings site.
Day Two - July 22
No new venues of concern are identified. Mr McLachlan says the next five days are going to be crucial for the region and residents need to come out and get tested, "particularly if they've got symptoms, not matter how mild".
Day Three - July 23
More than 1500 COVID-19 tests were performed at drive-through services in Parkes, Blayney, Molong, Orange and Bathurst.
No new cases are recorded.
Day Four - July 24
Testing dips slightly, with more than 1400 COVID-19 tests performed at drive-through services at the same five locations across the Western LHD.
Day Five - July 25
Around 900 tests were performed at drive-through services across the district.
Up until 8pm, over 37,000 tests have been conducted in the Western LHD over the course of the last four weeks.
Day Six - July 26
Western NSW Local Health District Chief Executive Scott McLachlan says low testing rates over the weekend in Blayney, Cabonne and Orange are of a "real concern" and may impact the region's ability to emerge from a seven-day lockdown on time.
Testing clinics across the region remain open in a bid to ensure "if COVID is in the region we can get in front of it", Mr McLachlan said.
Day Seven - July 27
The seven-day lockdown is due to end, with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian indicating news was promising ahead of an announcement on Tuesday.
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