23 February 2021

"Weak positive" COVID-19 case remains in hotel quarantine as a precaution

| Dominic Giannini
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COVID-19 vaccination

Greg Hunt and Rachel Stephen-Smith watching the ACT’s first COVID-19 vaccination yesterday. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

A man who returned on the repatriation flight from India and tested positive to COVID-19 will remain in hotel quarantine, despite ACT Health saying he does not pose a risk to the community.

The 60-year-old diplomat contracted the virus in December and tested negative before boarding the repatriation flight and on his first day of quarantine.

All repatriated Australians are tested before boarding flights to Australia, as well as on the first day of the hotel quarantine and between day 10 and 12 of quarantine.

All of the other 165 passengers were released from quarantine yesterday.

READ ALSO Frontline health worker the first Canberran to get the jab

ACT Health said the positive result is due to fragments of the virus from the old infection.

“This is known to happen intermittently for up to several months after a person is no longer infectious,” an ACT Health spokesperson said.

“We are confident that the individual is not infectious and poses no risk to the community. As a precaution, however, further tests will be conducted today (23 February).

“The individual currently remains in quarantine and is being supported by ACT Health.”

The case has not been added to the ACT’s tally of COVID-19 patients or Australia’s total infection numbers as the virus was reported and managed overseas.

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