Twist in suspected second WA case

 

A man who presented at Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth and posted on social media he had COVID-19 has been revealed as a historical case.

Western Australia health authorities confirmed late on Monday night investigations had determined the man's infection was historical.

It means the man was not infectious in Australia and at no time posed a public health risk, WA Health said in a statement.

"Members of the public who attended Fiona Stanley Hospital and the same entertainment venues as the individual can be reassured he did not pose a public health risk," WA Health said.

Authorities believe the man contracted the virus in Mexico in December last year.

The man returned to Australia from overseas travel and his completed two weeks hotel quarantine in NSW before returning to Western Australia.

 

The historical case presented at Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth.
The historical case presented at Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth.

 

"Initial PCR tests were very weak, in keeping with him being non-infectious and having infection some time ago," WA Health said.

"Subsequent test results received (on Monday) confirm the person is now PCR negative, but serology positive.

"This provides confirmation that the case was historical and non-infectious in WA."

The man has now been released from hotel quarantine in Perth.

The suspected case, which turned out to be historical, caused quite a stir in Perth after the man took to Facebook on Sunday to urge people he had been in contact with to get tested.

 

People arriving to get tested at Royal Perth Hospital on Monday. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Tony McDonough
People arriving to get tested at Royal Perth Hospital on Monday. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Tony McDonough

 

It comes as Perth and two neighbouring regions in the state's south enter their second day of a snap five-day lockdown after a separate case was confirmed on Sunday in a security guard working at the Four Points by Sheraton quarantine hotel in the CBD.

Health officials suspect the man, aged in his 20s, may have contracted the mutant UK strain from an active case at the hotel.

He visited 18 locations over several days before being diagnosed, sparking fears he may have spread the deadly illness widely and prompting a massive wave of community testing.

No new cases were announced on Monday from 3171 tests, with the state's total remaining at 903.

People in the Perth metropolitan area, Peel and South West regions will remain locked down until at least 6pm on Friday, with Premier Mark McGowan warning the easing of restrictions will likely be gradual.

Originally published as Twist in suspected second WA case


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