Queensland faces 'very different' Covid-19 outbreak

Author
Newstalk ZB, news.com.au,
Publish Date
Mon, 2 Aug 2021, 10:36AM
Photo / 123RF
Photo / 123RF

Queensland faces 'very different' Covid-19 outbreak

Author
Newstalk ZB, news.com.au,
Publish Date
Mon, 2 Aug 2021, 10:36AM

An Australian infectious disease expert has warned the Queensland outbreak has the makings of a "very significant event", similar to the situation being faced in Greater Sydney.

Queensland recorded nine new Covid-19 infections on Sunday, making it the highest daily increase in local cases the state has seen in almost a year. There are now 53 active cases in the state.

Director of Infectious Diseases at Mater Health, Dr Paul Griffin, told Weekend Today that Queensland had been "lucky" to avoid widespread outbreaks of the Delta variant so far, but warned this situation could easily get out of control.

"This one is very different. This one really does have the makings of something significant," he said.

"There's a lot of concerning elements about this, including where these people have been, how many exposure sites there are, how many people are already infected as a result. So I do think we need a comprehensive and swift range of mitigation strategies which is what we've seen."

Queensland was sent into a snap three-day lockdown on Saturday afternoon in a bid to allow contact tracers to track down the rapidly growing cases.

Until 4pm on Tuesday residents in 11 impacted LGAs in southeast Queensland can only leave home for essential tasks including buying groceries, essential work if they can't work from home, exercise within 10km of home, and healthcare, including vaccinations and caregiving.

Dr Griffin said due to the already high rate of transmission, this outbreak "has the makings of a very significant event".

"I think we're in a very fortunate position that we already had a mask mandate, so that's going to reduce the number of cases at least by a proportion," he said.

"Certainly if (lockdown) doesn't all go according to plan, we certainly could have sustained community transmission arising from this event."

Text by Mitchell Van Homrigh, news.com.au