One More COVID-19 Case for Australia’s Queensland

By AAP
May 2, 2020 Updated: May 3, 2020

The Australian state of Queensland has recorded just one new positive COVID-19 test while having just 53 active cases across the state which is embracing its second day of stay-at-home restrictions being eased.

Health Minister Steven Miles announced on Sunday that the total was now 1,035 confirmed cases with 976 having recovered from the virus.

The patient from Brisbane’s south is currently a case of unknown origin as authorities continue working to trace the source of infection.

Of the 53 active cases, 46 are located in the southeast of the state, four are in Cairns, two in Townsville, and one in the Wide Bay region. Nine people are in hospital with four in intensive care.

He said Queensland Health had purchased an additional 35 anaesthetic machines to deal with a worst-case scenario like New York in the United States.

“We ordered these machines as part of our surge planning when we were anticipating the worst and Queensland could look like New York City today,” Miles said.

“We are fortunate it doesn’t and we are going to continue that planning, so if the worst happens and we do have an outbreak…we can ensure every single Queenslander can access the care that they need.”

He said the government would consider a staggered re-opening of schools, which remain closed until May 22 other than for students of essential workers and vulnerable children.

A return would be based on whether the current easing of stay-at-home restrictions had an upward effect on case numbers. The review is timed to occur by May 15.

“In some ways, the restrictions that we eased this weekend will help inform that decision because..those restrictions were related to mobility,” he said.

“Once schools open up more, we will create a lot more mobility … parents taking kids to school, teachers in the classroom, kids going to and from school.

“It’s important for us to understand how that movement of people could affect the spread of the virus.”

Queensland’s first day of ‘freedom’ on May 2 was not without its problems with police issuing more than 30 infringement notices for breaches of COVID-19 directions.

From Saturday, residents could travel up to 50km from their home to shop, visit a park or even go to the drive-in.

However, they could only move about with members of their household and they also had to retain social distancing measures.

Yet police still handed out 32 on-the-spot fines for $1,334 (US$856) on May 2.

So far 1,664 on-the-spot fines for CCP virus related infringements have been issued, totaling more than $2.19 million (US $1.41 million).

Meanwhile, passengers on a Qantas flight to Brisbane were being urged to contact Queensland health officials after one person was diagnosed with the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus commonly known as coronavirus.

Passengers on flight QF614 from Melbourne to Brisbane on April 22 are being told to call 13 HEALTH to speak to officials, who will ask about their health and give some advice.

“We ask that passengers seated in rows 19, 20, 21, 22 and 23 of this flight, who have not already been contacted by Queensland Health call 13 HEALTH and advise that you were a passenger on this flight,” a statement from the health department said.

By Darren Cartwright. Epoch Times staff contributed to this report.