Home / World News / WA records two new cases of Covid-19 as some restrictions confirmed to end but masks will stay

WA records two new cases of Covid-19 as some restrictions confirmed to end but masks will stay

Western Australia has recorded two new cases of Covid-19 as the health minister confirmed some restrictions, including a ban on dancing, would end as planned on Tuesday.

But the use of masks while at indoor public places will continue until at least Friday, Amber-Jade Sanderson told reporters on Monday.

The new cases are a 20-year-old male backpacker, who is unvaccinated, and a 24-year-old vaccinated woman who lives in the same household.

“We believe they are linked to the current Delta backpacker outbreak but investigations are ongoing,” Ms Sanderson said.

“They are being moved into hotel quarantine today.

“They are believed to have been infectious in the community and as such new exposure sites will start to appear.”

Ms Sanderson said there were now 779 close contacts identified, with 23 yet to be tested.

Four of them were patrons from the Perth Mess Hall event linked to the original case.

There are also 1635 casual contacts, with 219 yet to be tested.

Regarding the Pan Pacific hotel quarantine security guard case reported on Sunday, Ms Sanderson said there were 14 close contacts, with 11 testing negative, one yet to be tested and two results pending.

There are also 27 casual contacts, with 19 testing negative, three pending and five yet to be tested.

“At present, there’s no evidence to suggest any PPE breach on the part of the guard and we expect genomic sequencing to be completed tomorrow night,” she said.

“We have to expect that this could be the first sign of Omicron in our community.”

There have been people in hotel quarantine who previously tested positive for the Omicron strain.

“I think what this demonstrates is, if it is Omicron. how contagious it is,” Ms Sanderson said.

She said there had been minor breaches by guests, such as sticking their heads out the door.

Ms Sanderson also said that from 6am Tuesday, the restrictions around seated consumption and dancing would be lifted.

“On Friday, we will review the situation based on the latest health advice, and make a decision on whether the end or mask requirement can be lifted, or if it needs to be,” she said.

The change means nightclubs and major events can return.

Proof of vaccination will be required at nightclubs, pubs, taverns, hospitality hotels, the Crown gaming floor, events with an occasional liquor license, and major events with more than 500 people where masks wearing will also be required outdoors.

It comes after a trial at the Perth Cup on New Year’s Day.

Restrictions were introduced in the Perth and Peel regions just before Christmas after it was revealed a French backpacker from Queensland had visited multiple sites and had spread the Delta strain of the virus.

Meanwhile, the ACT and Tasmania have been elevated to “high risk” states.

The Northern Territory is classified as “medium risk” while all other jurisdictions are deemed “extreme risk”.

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