Infected Qld man was a security contractor -sharenews
A man claiming diplomatic status who returned to Queensland and was subsequently diagnosed with COVID-19 was a security contractor, reinforcing the state government's call for a review of travel exemptions.
The man had permission to fly to the Sunshine Coast from NSW on Friday without having to go into quarantine.
But on Sunday he tested positive and is now in self-isolation with his wife in Maroochydore as health officials race to contact trace people who sat near him on the Jetstar flight from Sydney.
Queensland Health said the man was given an exemption to enter the state under arrangements agreed nationally in June by Australia's national cabinet of federal, state and territory leaders.
It's now been revealed he was not a consular staff member and was in fact a security contractor who had recently returned from Kabul, Afghanistan.
"The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade wrote to confirm the man was 'travelling on essential Australian government business'," Queensland Health said in a statement released late on Monday.
"He confirmed he held a diplomatic passport and provided his passport number."
But, the department said, this turned out to be not quite correct.
"We are concerned with the number of overall exemptions and the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee is reviewing criteria and will provide advice to national cabinet," it said.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has said the exemption issue needs to be reviewed.
"I'm going to raise this at national cabinet," she told reporters on Monday.
"There have been some exemptions. I don't think the time is right now for those exemptions."
"If we can close off any of those loopholes, it will keep everyone safe."
Ms Palaszczuk said all overseas travellers should be required to go into mandatory hotel quarantine.
There were no new cases recorded in Queensland on Monday.
Despite this, authorities remain on high alert, with health officials urging people with symptoms to get tested.
Authorities are also continuing to trace people who may have had contact with three women who returned to Queensland from Victoria more than a week ago.
Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said it was likely more cases related to the women would be diagnosed.
"It's now eight days since those first two cases who went to Melbourne ... have been out in the community," Dr Young said.
A private school in Brisbane's south will remain closed until next week, with about 850 students and staff to undergo another round of testing.
Teachers and children from Parklands Christian College were meant to return to the classroom on Wednesday but have been asked to remain at home under quarantine.
Metro Health South said as virus symptoms could take 14 days to develop, all staff and students were asked to undertake a test from day 10 onwards of their quarantine period before returning to school.
Queensland has 12 active cases, with seven people being treated in hospital.
All 105 residents at the Bolton Clarke aged care facility in Brisbane's southwest tested negative for the disease following fears an infected staff member may have spread the virus.
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