Qld spared from new local Covid cases as authorities desperately trace activity of infected Gold Coast ride-share driver
Queensland has been spared any new local Covid cases but authorities are still desperately tracing the activity of an infected Gold Coast ride-share driver, including whether the unvaccinated man jumped the border illegally.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Friday said there were five new cases in hotel quarantine, while a truck driver who went through Queensland on Monday and Tuesday has now tested positive in Melbourne.
Chief health officer Jeannette Young said the driver had received one dose of the vaccine early in October but was infectious while he was in Queensland, and had visited a petrol station at Acacia Ridge and a cinema at Stafford.
Friday’s update comes as police investigate whether Broadbeach man Duran Raman, aged in his 30s, entered the state illegally about 10 days ago.
Mr Raman broke Queensland’s 15-day streak without a locally acquired case on Thursday after becoming progressively sick and testing positive in hospital.
Dr Young said Mr Raman remained very unwell and was likely heading for intensive care.
“Sorry I have to report that he‘s very unwell. So they’re keeping a very close eye on him. He’s on high flow oxygen, and he’ll probably need to go into intensive care. That is terrible,” Dr Young said.
Mr Raman was infectious in the community for 10 days and visited a barber shop, but Dr Young said he was so sick that he was likely confined to the Broadbeach apartment complex where he lives.
Authorities on Thursday and Friday were trying to track his movements but inquiries have been hampered by the fact he is too ill to speak, with Mr Raman on Thursday receiving oxygen at Gold Coast University Hospital.
The Queensland government said he also had not used the Covid-19 check-in app since early September.
“He’s so sick that he’s having difficulty communicating with us, and difficulty remembering,” Dr Young said.
The state government said Mr Raman is believed to have left Queensland in September, with Dr Young saying the man spent some time in Melbourne.
Gold Coast residents have been urged to watch for Covid symptoms and Ms Palaszczuk says the 150,00-plus unvaccinated residents in the region need to get the jab.
Queensland high schools will become jab hubs on Saturday and Sunday as part of a vaccination blitz to get the state ready for its December 17 reopening, which is when the 80 per cent double dose target is expected to be hit.
The state currently has a first dose rate of 73.7 per cent, and a double dose percentage of 58.7 per cent. Both are badly lagging the national average.
There are 675,000 people in the state’s southeast corner who are not yet vaccinated. There are nine days to go before people miss the vaccination deadline so they can be ready for the reopening.
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