Coronavirus Australia: Queensland Health Minister downplays risk of University of Queensland shutdown

The prospect of a coronavirus outbreak at Queensland’s largest college campus stays low regardless of two college students contracting the illness, the state’s well being minister says.

A College of Queensland scholar visited the St Lucia campus in Brisbane – which is attended by round 50,000 college students and hundreds of employees – on Thursday and Friday final week.

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The 22-year-old man from Brisbane was recognized on Tuesday after just lately getting back from Italy, the coronavirus epicentre in Europe which has been positioned into lockdown, Spain and France.

In an e mail to college students seen by, UQ mentioned the coed was “unknowingly infectious” when he attended the campus.

“College students and employees who could have been in shut contact with a confirmed case can be contacted straight by Queensland Well being,” vice-chancellor Peter Høj mentioned within the e mail.

A student at the University of Queensland tested positive for the virus.
A scholar on the College of Queensland examined constructive for the virus. Credit score: College of Queensland/ mytotoyaya/Fb

“Shut contact is outlined as face-to-face contact for a interval over 15 minutes, or those that have shared an enclosed house for greater than two hours.”

State Well being Minister Steven Miles mentioned he didn’t know what number of college students the affected person had come into contact with.

However he mentioned the danger of transmission on the college was low, saying the type of “shut contact” required to transmit the illness was like “a dad or mum with a baby”.

“That’s not the type of contact that typically occurs in college lectures,” he mentioned on Wednesday.

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“What we outline as contact is somebody who’s had very shut contact for 15 minutes or been in a room with the individual for 2 hours.

“Whereas a lecture would possibly go for 2 hours, it’s not very shut contact.

“So the extent of danger could be thought-about to be fairly low.

“We’re contacting all of them (college students within the lecture), simply the identical.

FILE IMAGE of the University of Queensland’s St Lucia campus in Brisbane.
FILE IMAGE of the College of Queensland’s St Lucia campus in Brisbane. Credit score: Dave Hunt/AAP

Final week, a 20-year-old Brisbane-based man from China, who can be a UQ scholar, contracted coronavirus.

The college didn’t imagine he had attended its campuses.

His housemate, additionally a UQ scholar, examined damaging for the illness.

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Requested whether or not a shutdown of the St Lucia campus was needed, Miles mentioned ”UQ’s a really huge campus.”

“The proportion of people that might need had that stage of contact with this scholar might be very low,” he mentioned.

His feedback come as Southern Cross College closed its Gold Coast and Lismore campuses after a a employees member examined constructive for coronavirus.

The Philippines-based employees member fell ailing after returning dwelling following his attendance at a collection of workshops in Australia.

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