The news that the North has recorded its first positive COVID-19 case since borders reopened on December 15 is concerning, though not unexpected.
There are now at least four active cases in the state, and of further concern is a positive wastewater test recorded from a sample taken from Norwood.
The confirmation of that positive case follows several exposure sites in the North being listed late on Friday night, a list that has grown after 15 further sites were added yesterday, including several Launceston CBD businesses.
The government has repeatedly warned us the virus would spread in Tasmania when borders reopened and it was a point Premier Peter Gutwein reiterated yesterday, saying "we always knew that COVID would arrive".
But, predictable or not, it serves as a salient reminder we can't afford to drop our guards.
As the Premier said yesterday, it's important to stay informed and ensure you do "the little things".
The first "little thing" on that list should be ensuring you are fully vaccinated, which includes booking in for a booster shot if you're eligible. It should also include social distancing, ensuring good hand hygiene, and wearing a mask if you can't effectively social distance.
There have now been four cases of COVID in Tasmania since borders opened a few days ago, and it remains unclear which strain - or strains - those who have tested positive may be carrying.
That said, while some people appear content to drop their guards due to an apparent belief the Omicron variant is less harmful, it has already proven to be far more virulent.
World Health Organisation Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus - who has far greater insight than any armchair expert - summed it up well when he said: "Surely, we have learned by now that we underestimate this virus at our peril."
"Even if Omicron does cause less severe disease, the sheer number of cases could once again overwhelm unprepared health systems," he added.
As always, if you have any symptoms, it's important to get tested - not only for your own peace of mind and health, but to protect the most vulnerable in our community.
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