People in Canberra who were in Brisbane on or after March 11 must get tested and self-isolate as the COVID-19 situation worsens in Queensland

Davies

Rachel looks serious while addressing the media in a grey pantsuit.

People in Canberra who were in Brisbane on or after March 11 must get tested and self-isolate, as the COVID-19 situation worsens in Queensland.

Key points:

  • Anyone in the ACT who has been in the Brisbane or Moreton Bay council areas since March 11 must immediately self-isolate and get tested
  • New directions are in place requiring anyone from the Greater Brisbane area to declare so online
  • The new instructions come as a new case of the highly infectious UK strain of the virus is identified

A new case of the highly infectious UK strain of the virus has been detected in Brisbane and linked to a case identified on Thursday.

Queensland Health said they believe the newly detected case was the “missing link” between Thursday’s new case and a doctor who was diagnosed in early March and thought to have passed it on.

ACT Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said a new public health direction required anyone who has been in the Brisbane City Council area or the Moreton Bay Regional Council area since March 11 to get tested and isolate until they received a negative result.

Ms Stephen-Smith said people getting tested should prepare for longer waiting times at health facilities.

“While more staff have been put on, the wait is longer at our testing facilities than it has been in the past few weeks, so we ask people to please be patient,” Ms Stephen-Smith said.

Anyone who has been in the two council areas, as well as anyone who has been in the City of Ipswich, Logan City and Redlands City council areas must also complete an online declaration form.

Ms Stephen-Smith also noted anyone who visited an exposure site at the relevant time must quarantine immediately and contact ACT Health.

“This is a reminder yet again that the pandemic is not over,” Ms Stephen-Smith said.

“We know people will be travelling this school holidays and Easter weekend, so this is an important reminder.”

Ms Stephen-Smith said there were no active cases in Canberra, after a final person in hotel quarantine with COVID-19 was determined to have recovered.

Acting Chief Health Officer Dr Vanessa Johnston noted Australia was still in the “very early” stages of a vaccine rollout and so people must remain cautious.

“We still have to be very mindful of the rapidity of which cases and clusters can escalate,” Dr Johnston said.

She said interest in the vaccine had been strong.

“We are continuing to see strong engagement … that’s really positive. It is only up from here,” Dr Johnston said.

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