We apologise for any technical difficulties
A hotel quarantine security guard in NSW has tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the state’s virus-free streak to an end.
NSW Health was notified late on Saturday night of the new case.
They announced the news to the wider public on Sunday morning. The state has gone 55 days without a case of community transmission.
The 47-year-old security guard works at two Sydney hotels – Mantra Haymarket and Sofitel Wentworth – which provide hotel quarantine for returned travellers.
He was working a night shift at the Mantra on Friday night when he is believed to have been infectious.
The source of the new infection is under investigation and urgent genome sequencing is underway.
Health minister Brad Hazzard confirmed the man had received his first dose the Pfizer vaccine on March 2.
“Which was obviously good news, but you should be aware the antibody reaction required from vaccination doesn‘t get confirmed, or doesn’t achieve its maximum, until sometime after the first and second vaccinations.”
“So we would expect he would be due for another vaccination in the next week or so. As we have said all along, vaccination helps but it does not necessarily stop you getting the virus.”
Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said there was a time lag between receiving the vaccine and its protection kicking in, particularly with the Pfizer jab.
“This is not a silver bullet that will fix everything right away,” Prof Kelly said.
“There will still be outbreaks, even as we go through this vaccination program.”
Authorities named an aquatic centre, a popular cafe and a train line among the list of exposure sites.
NSW Health said close contacts of the worker is urgently underway.
The hotel worker will be included in Monday’s numbers, bringing the total number of cases in NSW since the beginning of the pandemic to 5,048.
There were three new cases recorded in overseas travellers on Sunday.
The news comes just two days after a Brisbane doctor contracted the coronavirus while working with COVID-positive patients.
Brisbane’s hospitals and aged care facilities were plunged into lockdown on Saturday.
The NSW government also took the opportunity to remind NSW residents to self-isolate if they had visited the hot spots in Brisbane.
“Several venues of concern in Brisbane have been identified and are listed on the Queensland Health website,” NSW Health said.
“Anyone who has attended any of these venues during the relevant times is asked to immediately self-isolate”.
Last month, a hotel quarantine worker in Melbourne caught the virus from a returned traveller, which caused a snap lockdown across the city.