Queensland has recorded its deadliest day of the pandemic with a further 24 COVID-19 related deaths in the last 24 hours.
“This is a really hard day, particularly of course, for family and loved ones of the individuals,” Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said on Wednesday.
Of those who died, one was aged in their 50s, two were in their 60s, 11 were in their 80s, seven were in their 90s and one person was over 100.
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16 were aged care residents, taking the total number of deaths in aged care across Queensland to 176.
Chief Health Officer Dr John Gerrard said the number of people receiving treatment for the virus in hospital continued to decline.
628 people are in public hospitals, down from 663 yesterday. However, the number of people in private facilities increased from 42 to 58.
“We peaked just close to 1000 on the 25th on January .. so that continues to fall,” Dr Gerrard said.
“What I’m interest to see is when all hospitals have just a single ward where they’re looking after COVID patients.
“There are still about a half a dozen hospitals in Queensland which require more than one ward to look after COVID patients.”
Queensland also recorded a further 6,902 COVID cases from over 17,000 tests.
295 were in children aged 5-11 and another 239 in those aged 12-17.
Dr Gerrard said the rise in case numbers in school-aged children was no surprise now that kids are back in classrooms.
“We will expect ongoing cases within schools in the coming weeks,” he said.
“Most of these cases are very, very mild.
“They’re no different to another other respiratory illness that every parent would be familiar with.
“But it is important that children who have any sort of respiratory illness continue to get tested.”
The Health Minister said they would not rush to close schools down if there were outbreaks.
“Each school will deal with any outbreak but they work with the Public Health Unit,” Ms D’Ath said.
“The Public Health Unit will work with the school as to whether there needs to be isolation or quarantining of individuals.
“Obviously the positive individual students would have to isolate but whether a whole class or a whole school need to quarantine, those are things that are determined on a case to case basis.”