DILIGENCE is crucial right now for Moorabool residents, the shire's mayor says, as coronavirus cases soars in bordering neighbours to the region's east.
Moorabool Shire, like Ballarat, has flatlined since the initial pandemic stages with three COVID-19 cases and no new active results in months.
The past fortnight cases have climbed with outbreaks in nearby Wyndham (Werribee) and Brimbank (which takes in part of Melton) and Melton.
Wyndham has recorded 41 new cases in the past three days alone, including 26 on Monday.
Moorabool mayor David Edwards said the potential for COVID-19 was always a very real concern in such an expansive shire with a large population of people commuting in and out - either to Ballarat or Melbourne.
He urged residents to keep doing the right thing, both when coming or leaving the shire.
"It's a concern when numbers ramp up nearby," Cr Edwards said.
"The key to all this is people taking appropriate cautions wherever they are. People have obviously been very diligent so far and that's not to mean we're not going to get a case in the future, but the key is diligence.
"Don't travel anywhere you don't need to be. Unnecessary transmission of the virus between communities is what we don't want."
Moorabool Shire takes in the region south of Ballarat, including Elaine, Lal Lal, Dunnstown and Clarke's Hill to near Trentham and includes Gordan and Ballan through to Bacchus Marsh.
Djerriwarrh Health Services, with hospitals based in Bacchus Marsh and Melton, is bracing for the virus.
The health service was one of the first in the state to set up a drive-through COVID-19 testing clinic in Melton and has screened more than 13,600 community members.
Djerriwarrh Health chief executive Belinda Scott said the drive-through was a way to maximise community testing for people mildly unwell, who work on frontlines or wanted peace of mind.
"Our staff have met the challenge again as testing ramps up with the latest COVID-19 testing blitz," Ms Scott said.
"I'm proud of the work of all our people and the quality care they provides to the Bacchus Marsh, Melton and Caroline Springs communities. They've done an outstanding job and I'm certain they will continue to rise to this challenge, in this effective, safe and professional way."
Deakin University epidemilogy lead Catherine Bennett has told The Courier there was always a risk an individual might lead to more cases in a region but all it could take was one case in the wrong place and it could spread quickly.
She said this was why lockdowns in hotspots were vital.
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