Dr Norman Swan Reckons That People In NSW Are Not As “Respectful” Of COVID As Victorians

"Here in Sydney we say 'hi' when we meet the novel coronavirus, whereas in Melbourne they say 'good morning'".


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Dr Norman Swan has riled up some people after declaring that NSW people are not as respectful of COVID-19 as Victorians are — adding heat to a stupid and unnecessary rivalry that did not need be fuelled by an expert.

Speaking to ABC’s RN Breakfast this morning, Dr Norman Swan made the comment when asked by host Fran Kelly if the NSW government’s rule of mandatory mask wearing in Greater Sydney was a strong enough barrier against the new outbreak of COVID-19 happening in Sydney right now.

Dr. Swan, the host of Coronacast podcast and Health Report on RN, replied with a simple no, and explained that essentially social distancing has got to occur as well — which is a totally expected answer from a doctor, right?

But then he went on to explain his was because, “NSW has not experienced a second wave like Victoria, so we’re not respectful of this virus.”

And continued by reinstating his sentiment more clearly (rather than just stopping) by saying: “NSW people are not respectful of this virus the same extent Victorians are.”

Since the conversation, social media has reacted to Dr. Swan’s totally unnecessary dig at NSW in the best way possible — by taking a dig back at him.

And many people were also quick to point out the rather obvious… that NSW is not less respectful to COVID-19 but has actually had an extremely good track record of quick contract tracing, pinpointing exposure sites, and using lockdowns as the last resort to keep businesses open.

For the time being, the New South Wales Government has decided against a state lockdown, despite NSW recording another 16 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases over night.

But NSW has reintroduced social distancing measures for one week, which include households being limited to five visitors, masks being compulsory in all indoor non-residential venues, and the one person per four square metre rule.

Also for people who live or wok in the City of Sydney, Waverley, Randwick, Canada Bay, Inner West, Bayside and Woollahra local government areas, non-essential travel is off limits for a week.

But even if we are going to compare, like Dr Norman Swan did, Sydney’s current outbreak is arguably more under control than Victoria’s most recent outbreak, because NSW officials know the chains of transmission and where this Delta strain came from.

In fact, many of the new cases are in isolation already, with only one unidentified case being a primary school student in the Eastern Suburbs.