Fears grow Brisbane lockdown will be extended over Easter

·Associate News Editor
·3-min read

Concern continues to grow that Brisbane's three-day lockdown could be extended over Easter as Queensland health authorities scramble to contain two coronavirus clusters.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state should expect further cases after an additional eight locally acquired cases were confirmed on Tuesday.

Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young has also hinted the lockdown could spread further across the state as the threat of infection further afield increases.

"The message here is that people should be on alert, no matter where they are in Queensland," Dr Young said.

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 30: Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk speaks at Parliament House on March 30, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia. The Greater Brisbane area is under lockdown for three days, after restrictions came into effect at 5 pm on Monday. The lockdown measures for Ipswich, Logan, Redlands, Moreton and Brisbane council areas mean schools are closed and residents can only leave their homes for work and healthcare or essential shopping and exercise in their local area, and must wear face masks. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says more cases are likely, with a lockdown decision looming. Source: Getty

One known case lives on the Gold Coast and others have visited Toowoomba, Gladstone, Hervey Bay and Gin Gin while infectious.

On Tuesday evening, Queensland Health added nine Gold Coast locations to a list of potential exposure sites which has now grown to more than 80 locations statewide.

Included were a Surf Life Saving competition at Tugun and the popular Bundall Farmers' Market at the Home of the Arts, both on Sunday.

Current stay-at-home orders are in place until 5pm on Thursday and will be reviewed on Wednesday.

Ms Palaszczuk said the 48-hour period leading up to that was "critical for our contact tracers to get on top of this".

She said contact tracers were now in "overdrive".

Griffith University infectious disease expert Nigel McMillan told the Courier Mail he believed the lockdown would be extended by at least two more days if similar figures to Tuesday were revealed.

And NSW remains on high-alert as one of the clusters centres around a nurse and six others who travelled to Byron Bay for a hen's party, visiting several venues.

BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 30: Health care workers at a drive through COVID-19 test clinic at the Cavanbah Centre on March 30, 2021 in Byron Bay, Australia. Byron Bay residents are being urged to remain vigilant for COVID-19 symptoms after two positive cases travelled from Queensland to Byron Bay on the weekend. While no cases have been reported in the area, NSW residents are being urged to avoid travel to Queensland. Greater Brisbane went into a three-day lockdown on Monday after new COVID-19 cases were detected in the community. (Photo by James D. Morgan/Getty Images)
The Byron Bay area underwent a testing blitz on Tuesday. Source: Getty

Hospital locks down for second time

Queensland Health on Tuesday evening confirmed the Princess Alexandra Hospital would be locked down for the second time in a month.

"This additional lockdown will enable PA Hospital to put in place processes to manage impacts associated with these linked cases," an official said.

The hospital will continue to test all staff that have worked in the Covid-19 ward since March 19.

The nearby Mater Mothers' Hospital has also sent home staff - including midwives and doctors - after a recent visitor tested positive to the virus, according to the ABC.

The person visited the private maternity section and a nearby coffee shop popular with staff.

One of the clusters relates to a doctor at the Princess Alexandra Hospital who contracted the virus earlier this month after treating a confirmed case.

The second cluster began with the nurse who travelled to Byron Bay, and she works at the same hospital however it is not known yet how she acquired the virus.

She was not vaccinated while working at the hospital where she dealt with Covid patients.

With AAP

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