The Wollongong resident who tested positive to COVID-19 two days after they left hotel quarantine is unlikely to have contracted the virus while in the hotel, NSW health authorities said.
Genomics testing revealed that the case isn’t related to any other cases in hotel quarantine.
“Fortunately NSW continues its run with zero community transmission,” NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters on Wednesday morning.
“The other good piece of news is that the person who contracted the virus on day 17 is unlikely to have contracted it while in quarantine.”
Health experts have come up with two other “more likely hypotheses” of the source of infection.
They think the returned traveller had a longer incubation period or it was a historic case.
“Not everyone who has a COVID infection develops antibodies,” said NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant, which is why health authorities can’t be sure if it’s an old case of coronavirus.
“There were five positive cases at the health hotel at the same time as the individual.
“That sequence does not match the case.
“That person had very low levels of virus and positive,” she added.
It comes just days after the UK strain of the virus spread between quarantine guests in a Melbourne hotel.
The Wollongong resident’s positive test result sparked an urgent health alert and put 11 different venues on an exposure sites list, including a Kmart store and a Woolworths branch.