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South African strain detected in QLD

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A woman has tested positive to the South African strain of coronavirus after arriving in Queensland.

Health officials are on high alert, as the South African strain of coronavirus – which may be more contagious – has been detected in Queensland.

The woman arrived in Queensland from South Africa on December 22 and was in hotel quarantine when she tested positive. She was now in Sunshine Coast University Hospital.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said it was the first positive case of the South African variant in Australia.

“We have seen other jurisdictions record a UK variant, but this is the first time the South African one has been identified in Australia,” she said.

“We are absolutely confident that all proper measures were taken at the hotel and in the transfer and of course at the hospital in relation to this positive case.”

Queensland authorities have now warned even fewer exemptions would be granted in light of the escalating risk for travellers bringing highly contagious strains into Queensland.

There have been 78 overseas acquired cases in Queensland since early October, it has been revealed.

Viral fragments of COVID-19 have been detected in treatment plants across Queensland.

The seven treatment plants are in Victoria Point, Oxley Creek, Goodna, Fairfield, Redcliffe, Cairns North and Nambour.

Anyone in those areas who have even the mildest symptoms of coronavirus is encouraged to seek testing immediately, Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said.

“The results do not necessarily mean there are active cases in these regions and there are no known outbreaks or infectious cases in the area currently.

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