Melbourne COVID contacts ‘could be in Queensland’: D’ath

Queensland’s Health Minister has warned it is highly likely that contacts of the Melbourne COVID cluster are already in the Sunshine State, urging people to remain vigilant for symptoms.

The border slammed shut to Victoria at 1am on Friday with residents from there turned away.

Queensland residents returning to the Sunshine State from Victoria will be forced to do 14 days in hotel quarantine in Brisbane or Cairns.


Health Minister Yvette D’ath has defended the tough measures, rejecting claims they have jumped the gun.

“There’s two clusters in Victoria at the moment and I understand that over 150 venues and over 10,000 contacts so far,” Ms D’ath said.

“So any of those contacts could be in Queensland right now so, no we don’t believe that we have acted hastily.

“We have followed the lead of Victoria. We did not declare Victoria a hotspot until they themselves locked down their city and the whole state.

“You don’t make the decision to lock down an entire state quickly, there’s a lot of thought that’s gone into that.”

Read more: Queensland slams border shut to Victoria, yesterday’s arrivals told to lockdown

Health officials have not given any indication of how long the border closure will remain in place but the Chief Health Officer has previously required 28 days of no local transmission.

The Minister has also expressed confidence that community vaccine hubs could be up and running before the end of July as planned.

The state government will establish 14 hubs across the state over the next couple of months.

Four hubs are already operating in the Wide Bay and Mackay regions with three to be established within weeks in the southeast with the rest to follow after that.

The hubs will also offer the Pfizer vaccine to Queensland residents aged 40 to 49.