Aus hotel quarantine worker infected with UK Covid variant

A second hotel quarantine worker in Australia’s Victoria state was tested positive for the highly infectious Covid-19 strain that was first discovered in Britain, Premier Daniel Andrews said on Tuesday.

Andrews said genomic testing results on Tuesday morning confirmed the woman who worked at Holiday Inn at the Melbourne Airport was infected with the highly contagious variant, reports Xinhua news agency.

Eight primary close contacts and 136 work close contacts are currently isolating and waiting for their test results.

Despite the challenges, Victoria did not report any new case on Tuesday.

One hotel quarantine case has been transferred to the hospital in intensive care.

“Zero new cases either in hotel quarantine or in the community. That’s very pleasing given the challenges we’ve had in recent days,” Andrews said.

“There were some 12,816 test results received over the last 24 hours and we thank each and every one of those more than 12,000 people for attending and getting tested.”

Meanwhile, the neighbouring state of New South Wales (NSW) recorded two new cases in hotel quarantine with further investigations into the source of infection for a returned overseas traveller who tested positive after being released.

The person from the Wollongong area had tested negative twice during the quarantine period at the Sofitel Wentworth, but was positive in a recently enhanced day-16 follow-up test.

All of the person’s 10 close contacts have now tested negative.

However, NSW Health said on Tuesday that anyone who attended two previously announced venues in Wollongong on specific dates and times is now considered a close contact and should immediately get tested and self-isolate for 14 days regardless of the result.