CCTV stills related to the first case in the Parafield cluster have been reviewed this week, with authorities finding no deliberate breach of protocol in relation to medi-care workers at Peppers Waymouth Hotel in central Adelaide.
“This is a new virus and we are learning more about it every day. There is never zero risk. We need to put as many shields as we can in place to protect the South Australian community, and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” said Premier Steven Marshall.
The Premier stated the government and health officials acted “swiftly and decisively,” in relation to the Parafield cluster, and announced a number of precautions that would be put in place moving forward to ensure the health and safety of both travellers and medi-hotel workers.
The following plan has been put together by health officials following the CCTV analysis:
- All positive COVID cases will be transferred to a dedicated health facility. The old Wakefield Hospital is being considered for this.
- At these dedicated facilities, security will be provided by SA police and protective security officers.
- Staff working at these facilities will not be able to engage in work at any other high-risk facilities such as aged care facilities.
- All staff working at these facilities will have access to the Hotels For Heroes programme, which allows them to rest away from home if they choose to.
- All risk mitigation has been discussed with the AHPPC.
- National Cabinet will consider testing all returning Australian citizens prior to the flight home in a bid to stop COVID-19 entering the country.
- The medi-hotel in question will undergo deep cleaning.
South Australian Chief Public Health Officer, Professor Nicola Spurrier announced there have been no further COVID-19 cases found as of this morning. There are currently 29 cases linked to the Parafield cluster. Two of these are international travellers who returned home recently.
Professor Spurrier said, “the reason for this [link] is yesterday health officials gained genomic information from the travellers. What was found is that this was the same strain of COVID as they found in the Parafield cluster.”
Officials have concluded the travellers did not contract COVID from travelling overseas, but from their stay in the Peppers medi-hotel.
Professor Spurrier also said “it’s fairly clear that the index case is one of the security guards and not the cleaner. We can tell that by who was on what floor at what time.”
She said there were no instances of staff going into rooms with travellers, and no inappropriate behaviour.
There are currently 4,300 people in quarantine and one person, a woman in her 50s, in a stable condition in hospital. Monitoring and quarantining of close contacts of the cluster continues.
There are 38 active cases in the state, bringing the state total count to 557 cases. 9403 people were tested yesterday.
Police commissioner Grant Stevens said that as well as a focus on the plan, as interstate borders open, we need to work out how to manage those borders.
The Parafield Cluster remains a significant concern. If you have respiratory symptoms, or feel unwell, seek testing at a SA Health testing centre.
Visit the Contact Tracing page for more information on what you need to do, including if you need to self-isolate or get tested.
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