A Brisbane COVID-19 quarantine hotel is in lockdown as health authorities investigate an infected traveller for links to an infected Brisbane hospital doctor.
The traveller had been staying on the same floor of the Hotel Grand Chancellor at the same time as another infected traveller, who is now at the Princess Alexandra Hospital.
That patient had contact with a doctor who later became infected with the coronavirus, forcing the hospital into lockdown.
“Case one is the person brought into the hospital on the ninth of March, case two was the doctor who got it off the person who came in on the ninth,” Health Minister Yvette D’Ath told reporters on Sunday.
“Case three is a person in hotel quarantine on the same floor as case one.
“We’re assessing that at the moment. We’ve got CCTV footage … to try to identify why this transmission might have occurred.”
No guests will leave the hotel and no new guests will be checked into the site until health officials complete their investigation.
Meanwhile, 238 people linked to the infected doctor have been traced, with virus test results due back in the coming days, Deputy Chief Health Officer Sonya Bennett said.
This includes 61 staff and seven patients at the hospital. Three close contacts of the doctor have all tested negative.
The infected doctor had contact with two patients in the early hours of Wednesday before testing positive on Friday.
One of the patients is likely to have passed on the highly contagious UK strain of the virus, Dr Bennett said.
She said genomic testing also showed one of the patients may be linked to the case being investigated at the hotel, which was diagnosed on day 12 of the traveller’s 14-day quarantine period.
“They both travelled through the same area on the way,” Dr Bennett said.
“The information is all a little bit unusual and what we want to rule out is that there’s been any transmission in the hotel.”
She said there could be a number of factors behind the new case at the hotel – which was diagnosed on Saturday – including a late incubation period, the same overseas virus source and hotel transmission.
The female doctor worked a shift at PA late on Wednesday and Thursday while asymptomatic and was infectious in the community for about a day.
She assessed the patients for admission to the hospital and would have involved face to face contact, Dr Bennett said.
“My understanding is she moved through the hospital depending on where the need was,” she said.
The PA remains in lockdown and all hospitals, aged care and disability facilities in the Greater Brisbane area are closed to visitors, and masks must be worn inside them.
A health alert remains in place for people who on Thursday visited the Morning After Cafe in West End between 2pm and 3.15pm, Greenslopes’ Corporate Box gym between 5.45pm and 7pm, and the Stones Corner Hotel between 7pm and 7.45pm.
Anyone who attended the venues must get tested and isolate for two weeks.
Ms D’Ath defended Queensland’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout and refuted claims the personal protection equipment made available to frontline health workers was inadequate.
“We comply with the national guidelines and standards in relation to all of the PPE that we provide to our staff in our hospitals,” she told reporters on Sunday.
“I have been advised the doctor was wearing the appropriate PPE.”
Ms D’Ath rejected assertions the doctor – who was working at PA – wouldn’t have contracted the virus if she’d been inoculated.