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COVID-19: Relaxation of travel restrictions between WA and Queensland on hold after new Gold Coast case

The relaxation of travel restrictions between Queensland and WA from Friday will be “paused” after the discovery of a COVID-positive Uber driver on the Gold Coast.

Premier Mark McGowan said his Government would wait until Monday to decide whether to move ahead with reclassifying Queensland as “very low risk”.

Under changes that were previously slated for Friday, quarantine-free travel between WA and Queensland would have resumed for the first time in months.

“We’re going to pause until at least Monday, when we will consider it further. We’re very worried about what might have occurred on the Gold Coast,” Mr McGowan said.

The infected Queensland man is in his 30s and lives on his own at an apartment complex at Broadbeach. He is understood to have tested positive in Robina on Wednesday.

“He’s so sick that he’s having difficulty communicating with us, and difficulty remembering,” Queensland chief health officer Jeannette Young said.

There are multiple reasons Queensland authorities are concerned about the case, including the length of time he was out and about, the fact he wasn’t vaccinated and that he hadn’t used the QR code check-in since mid-September.

He was in Melbourne nearly two weeks ago and was active in the community for about 10 days before he became increasingly unwell.

The man is understood to be receiving oxygen at the Gold Coast University Hospital.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also noted that there were still 156,000 unvaccinated residents on the Gold Coast who were particularly vulnerable to the disease.

“You don‘t want to end up like this young man in hospital, extremely ill,” she said.

“He’s a young man in his 30s, so he’s in that age group that we’re really stressing to get vaccinated.”

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