Queenslanders have been asked to get tested if symptoms of COVID-19 appear after fragments of the virus were repeatedly detected in the state’s sewerage areas, including Hervey Bay and Maryborough.
Dr. Sonya Bennett, acting health chief for Queensland, said repeated detections in these places are becoming increasingly worrying.
« In the past two weeks, 16 sewer basins in various locations across the state have detected viral fragments of COVID-19, » said Dr. Bennett.
« Cleveland and Carole Park are particularly worrisome as we do not have hotel quarantine points feeding these sewer systems.
« That’s why we urge anyone with any symptoms, no matter how mild it is, to come forward and get tested.
« Symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, tiredness, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, and loss of taste or smell.
« This is more important now than ever as we know that the new variants that are emerging overseas are more contagious than previous variants we saw in Queensland.
« If there is a case that we are not yet aware of, it is important that we identify it as soon as possible through our testing mechanisms in order to contain any possible spread.
« It is, of course, also possible that this evidence relates to previous COVID-19 cases where viral fragments can be shed for a few months after they are no longer infectious. »
Dr. Bennett said other sewer catchments across the state have repeatedly tested positive for COVID-19 fragments.
« Gibson Island and Pulgul (Hervey Bay) have made positive discoveries in the past three weeks, » said Dr. Bennett.
« While some of these catchment areas are in areas where cases have been identified with international arrivals, it is very important that everyone monitor their health and come in for tests to see if they have any symptoms. »
Hervey Bay Clinic is located in the community parking lot next to St. Stephen’s Hospital and is open 7:30 am to 5:30 pm daily.
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