NSW extends mask requirements after dozen new Covid-19 cases in the state

New South Wales has recorded 12 new Covid-19 cases and health authorities have updated mask usage recommendations to include public-facing workers, worshippers and residents near clusters.

Woman wears mask while waiting to board train at Circular Quay train station, Sydney. Source:

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said authorities would not make public mask usage mandatory in NSW but had revised their current recommendations to address four specific circumstances.

As well as in situations where social distancing is impossible, masks should also be worn in NSW by public-facing employees such as hospitality or supermarket workers, worshippers and residents of suburbs near Covid-19 clusters.

"We have been talking about masks for several weeks but obviously the persistent situation in Victoria gives us cause for alarm in terms of the potential for further seeding in NSW, and it is about risk mitigation strategy," Ms Berejiklian said on Sunday.

"We're going to the next stage of assessing what else and how else we can decrease the risk and break the current chain coming through NSW."

NSW recorded 12 new cases - with just one in hotel quarantine - in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday from almost 22,500 cases. Eight people are in intensive care.

NSW Health's Dr Jeremy McAnulty on Saturday said seven cases in the past week had not been linked to known cases, emanating from southwestern Sydney, western Sydney, southeastern Sydney and Sydney local health districts.

It comes after an 83-year-old man connected to the Crossroads Hotel cluster in southwest Sydney died, taking the NSW death toll to 52 and the nationwide tally past 200.

It was the first coronavirus-related death in NSW since late May.