Latest virus cluster grows by three

By | August 27, 2020

The Brisbane Youth Detention Centre cluster has grown overnight, the Queensland Premier has announced.

Three new COVID-10 cases have been confirmed in the 24 hours to Friday morning, after more than 21,563 tests were carried out.

All new cases are linked to the prison officer trainer at the Queensland Corrective Services Academy trainer who tested positive yesterday. Two are based at Pinkenba and one from Forest Lake.

Annastacia Palaszczuk said all new cases had had mild symptoms. All 200 people linked to the Academy will now be tested after the 25 close contacts tested negative.

It comes as the chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young said authorities were still trying to piece the case of a 60-year-old prison officer trainer who tested positive on Wednesday.

While he works at Wacol and lives in Forest Lake, suburbs that already have positive cases linked to the cluster, there is no “clear link” between them.

As a result, 7000 prisoners are in lockdown throughout the state as a “precautionary measure”.

Dr Young also said genomic testing had failed to reach a conclusive finding as to whether the strain of virus in the latest cluster was the same as the one brought up from Melbourne by two women who allegedly breached border protocols last month.

Both clusters have been linked to the B.1.1.25 lineage of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, with just one molecule difference in genetic sequencing between the two outbreaks.

“The problem is, there’s lots of other samples out there that are exactly the same and we know it’s the most frequent lineage that’s circulating in NSW and Victoria,” Dr Young said.

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“We can’t say definitively that those two cases are linked but we can’t say they’re not.“

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