Rockhampton Hospital.
Rockhampton Hospital.

COVID-19 UPDATE: Patient remains in CQ Hospital, flu surges

A 60-YEAR-OLD man remains in isolation in Rockhampton Hospital today as the first and only COVID-19 case for Central Queensland.

The man, who is from the Brisbane region, went into isolation on Friday after coming into close contact with a 56-year-old woman who was a confirmed case on March 12, 2020, after travelling to Indonesia.

A spokeswoman from Queensland Health said at 10am Tuesday there had been “no changes to the patient’s condition or admission”.

It is understood the man flew into Mackay last week after coming into contact with the woman and met with people before driving out to Daunia mine for a training presentation to BMA mine workers.

It is believed he then drove back to Mackay before heading to Rockhampton where he felt unwell and presented at Rockhampton Hospital.

On Monday, Mackay had its first confirmed case of COVID-19 after a 36-year-old woman was admitted to hospital.

She was transferred from Hamilton Island after testing positive to the disease and is being cared for in Mackay Base Hospital.

It is understood she had been tested for the novel coronavirus in Sydney and flew to Hamilton Island before receiving the results.

The woman was isolated and transferred to the Mackay hospital after testing positive.

While COVID-19 cases continue to climb across Australia, seasonal influenza cases are also on the rise.

Year to date (March 9), lab-confirmed flu cases for CQ Public Health Unit area are at 165.

This figure is up 92 cases when compared with the previous average of 72 for the same period.

Public Health Director Dr Gulam Khandaker said the high figure could be due to the increased number of people tested in recent months.

According to a CQ Health spokeswoman, government-funded flu vaccines are expected to be available in late March/early April.

There are also signs of continued pressure on supplies, with grocery stores across Central Queensland struggling to keep up with the demand of panic buying.

An hour and a half after opening its doors to the public, the shelves at Woolworths Allenstown began to empty, with toilet paper, hand sanitiser, frozen foods and pasta in high demand, a Morning Bulletin reporter observed.

Currently, testing for novel COVID-19 is only available for people who are feeling unwell and have travelled overseas in the past 14 days or have had contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus.

See the Queensland Health website for more information.

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