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Mystery surrounds woman's positive test two months after overseas trip

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A woman in her 70s has become the 12th active COVID-19 case in Queensland – from a total of 1058 – but the circumstances remain a mystery.

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Queensland’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Jeannette Young, said the woman would be interviewed to facilitate contact tracing and help determine where and when she was infected.

COVID-19 normally has an incubation period of around 14 days, and it is not clear whether she self-isolated at home for 14 days after her travels

“She returned from India via Singapore two months ago, and has now tested positive after developing some mild respiratory symptoms,” Young said.

“We think it most likely that she acquired the case in India but will now have to do a lot of work to work through that.”

Young said the international border restrictions, followed by domestic border restrictions, had prevented more Queenslanders being infected and remained a crucial public health measure.

At a press conference with Young today, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk took the opportunity to ask the Chief Health Officer to clarify the rules for people over 70.

“My parents continually harass me about this issue, but it is a common issue that is being raised with a lot of my MPs,” Palaszczuk said.

Young said older people had become socially isolated and it was time to “slowly but carefully have people come out and mingle in society”.

“For our older citizens here in Queensland, they have done a fantastic job but they have really borne the brunt of this,” Young said.

Young suggested people call ahead of visiting shops or cafes, to find out whether they are crowded, and plan trips into the community. Social distancing was still required, she said, and people should stay home if sick and seek testing where appropriate.

A Rockhampton aged care facility remains in lockdown after a nurse worked while contagious. No new cases have been reported in that potential cluster.

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