NSW quarantine hotel worker tests positive to coronavirus

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New South Wales Health has confirmed a hotel quarantine worker has tested positive for coronavirus.

Portrait of asian woman drive thru coronavirus covid-19 test by medical staff with PPE suit by nose swab. New normal healthcare drive thru service and medical concept.

File photo. Photo: 123rf.com

It is the first locally acquired case in the Australian state in 55 days.

Stephen Conaty from NSW Health said the person worked at two Sydney hotels with returned overseas travellers.

“The source of the new infection reported overnight is under investigation and urgent genome sequencing is underway”.

Close contacts of the case were also being tested, Dr Conaty said.

NSW Health would not provide further information on the hotel worker, however Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the individual had received their first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination.

“This is an important point, the [effectiveness of the] vaccination is not immediate. I have had my second dose and it does take a while,” Morrison said, moments after receiving the jab.

“You should still try to observe the Covid-safe behaviours – I’m wearing a mask today.”

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The Pfizer vaccine is administered as two shots, spaced at least three weeks apart.

Australia’s chief medical officer Paul Kelly said it wasn’t fully effective until after weeks after the second dose had been administered.

“There is a time lag of getting that vaccine and the protection kicking in, of a few weeks, and as you get the second dose, particularly with the Pfizer vaccine, that protection increases.”

Professor Kelly said the Pfizer vaccine was “very effective, but not 100 percent effective” against mild and moderate disease, but it was almost 100 percent effective against severe disease, hospitalisation and death.

The positive case was reported in Australia late on Saturday night and will be recorded in Monday’s Covid-19 figures.

No new locally acquired cases had been reported by 8pm Saturday night. But three new cases were acquired overseas, bringing the total number of cases in the state since the pandemic began to 5,048.

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There were 9,269 tests conducted in the latest reporting period.

The positive NSW quarantine worker case comes after a doctor in Queensland tested positive for Covid-19 after treating returned overseas travellers in Brisbane.

 

-ABC

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