REVEALED: 90% of Victoria’s coronavirus cases can be traced back to just ONE hotel – after COVID-19 spread to staff during the bungled quarantine program
Around 90 per cent of Victoria’s second-wave coronavirus cases can be traced back to a single quarantine hotel, an inquiry heard today.
A member of a family of four quarantining at Melbourne’s Rydges on Swanston hotel first developed symptoms on May 9, according to government epidemiologist Charles Alpren.
The rest of the family became symptomatic three days later then on May 25 three people working at the hotel fell ill before a further 17 people tested positive, he said.
Staff inside a hotel in Melbourne are seen moving luggage for guests in quarantine on June 25
‘They were either people working in the hotel in a range of roles, or household or social contacts of staff members,’ said Dr Alpren, who works for Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services.
‘Approximately 90 per cent or more of current COVID-19 infections in Victoria can be traced to the Rydges hotel’.
Almost all the other cases can likely be traced back to the Stamford Plaza Hotel which was also used for quarantine, according to Dr Alpren.
‘It is likely that a high proportion, approximately 99 per cent of current cases of COVID-19 in Victoria have arisen from Rydges or Stamford,’ he said.
RYDGES ON SWANSTON CLUSTER:
* May 9 – Family of four return to Australia from overseas and begin mandatory hotel quarantine. First family member becomes symptomatic on the same day.
* May 10 – Second family member becomes symptomatic.
* May 11 – Third family member becomes symptomatic.
* May 12 – Fourth family member becomes symptomatic.
* May 14 – First two family members test positive to COVID-19.
* May 15 – Family moved to the Rydges on Swanston Hotel.
* May 17 to 18 – Other family members test positive to COVID-19.
* May 25 – Three members of staff at Rydges on Swanston Hotel become symptomatic. They subsequently test positive to COVID-19.
* May 26 to June 18 – A total of 17 people are epidemiologically linked to the Rydges outbreak, and were either working in the hotel or household members or social contacts of staff at the hotel. An additional case, a household contact of a staff member at the Rydges hotel, is diagnosed with COVID-19 in Queensland.
* May 30 – Department of Health and Human Services receives first genomic analysis relating to the outbreak and comes to the conclusion all cases belonged to the same transmission network.
* By July 31 – DHHS has received genomic sequencing reports of 14 of the 17 cases epidemiologically linked to the outbreak. It found all 14 cases cluster genomically together and cluster genomically with the family of overseas returnees.
STAMFORD PLAZA CLUSTER:
* June 1 – Man returns from overseas and enters mandatory hotel quarantine. On the same day, he becomes symptomatic.
* June 3 – Man tested for COVID-19, diagnosed with the virus the following day.
*June 10 – Staff member becomes symptomatic.
* June 11 – A couple returns from overseas and enters mandatory hotel quarantine. On the same day, one of them becomes symptomatic. The second becomes symptomatic the following day.
* June 14 – Staff member diagnosed with COVID-19. The couple is tested for the virus.
* June 15 to 16 – Couple diagnosed with COVID-19.
* By July 13 – A total of 46 people have been epidemiologically linked to to the Stamford Plaza outbreak are diagnosed with COVID-19. They are either workers at the hotel or household contacts of staff members.
* Subsequent genomic sequencing concludes the outbreak consists of two distinct chains of transmission. One cluster arose from the overseas traveller from June 1, the other from the couple from June 11.
* To date, the DHHS has received genomic sequencing reports of 35 of the 46 cases epidemically linked to the outbreak.
* No links found between the cases in the Rydges hotel outbreak and Stamford Plaza outbreak.
Source: Witness statement of Dr Charles Alpren, epidemiologist at the Department of Health and Human Services.
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