Genome sequencing results have confirmed the Brisbane COVID-19 case reported yesterday (Sunday 20 June) is the Alpha variant.
Genome sequencing has also helped reveal the transmission is likely to have occurred in hotel quarantine.
The genome sequence is identical to a cabin crew member who underwent quarantine at the same hotel.
Queensland Health is continuing investigations to understand how the transmission occurred, and we thank the hotel for their assistance.
However, early indications suggest there has been fomite transmission from a hotel guest who was infectious to yesterday’s case.
Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said yesterday’s positive case had been in hotel
quarantine for 14 days and tested negative on day zero, day five and day 12.
“On day 14, she left hotel quarantine, however later that morning, had a routine surveillance test required by all cabin crew every seven days, and this test returned a positive result,” Dr Young said.
“We have to take all variants seriously but given this one is Alpha, it reduces the risk to the community as opposed to the more contagious Delta strain we had initially suspected that is now circulating through parts of Sydney.
“As a result of reviewing the CCTV footage, we’ve been able to downgrade the risk associated with DFO Brisbane (Airport) and we now ask anyone who attended between 4pm and 4.30pm on Saturday, 19 June to monitor for symptoms and get tested if they experience any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter how mild.
“The exception is the Cotton On store where anyone who visited between 4.10pm and 4.30pm must quarantine and complete the online contact tracing form.
“We have added the Hamilton Harbour Residences to the contact tracing list for the duration of the day (19 June), as there is a possibility non-residents may have visited throughout the day and used the same lifts as the positive case.