Western Australia authorities say there is a 'strong possibility' Covid Omicron is spreading – Daily Mail

January 16, 2022

By Michael Ramsey For Australian Associated Press


A person who was probably infected with the Omicron variant while in the community is among four new local COVID-19 cases in Western Australia.
The person, identified as Case 1244, had close contact with a confirmed Omicron case who recently returned from Tasmania.
They subsequently spent several days in the community in Perth.
Mark McGowan has said he intends to stick to the February WA border reopening despite Omicron variant (pictured in December) 
The other three cases include a truck driver who arrived from South Australia and two close contacts of a previous truck driver infection. All are in quarantine.
A number of new exposure sites have been added to the HealthyWA website, including supermarkets and pharmacies in Perth’s southern suburbs.
Testing clinics will also have their operating hours extended.
Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson on Tuesday said genomic sequencing was expected to confirm Case 1244 was infected with the Omicron strain.
‘There’s a strong possibility there’s been community spread of Omicron,’ she told reporters.
WA residents have been closed off from the rest of the country for almost two years (pictured: Perth in December) 
‘This is just part and parcel of managing a really aggressive strain of this virus.’
Ms Sanderson said Case 1244 had travelled to the airport on January 2 to pick up a family member who had returned from Tasmania.
She said the infected person had worn a face mask at the airport and followed all other rules.
The state government on Tuesday launched its new ServiceWA app, integrating proof of vaccination records, the SafeWA QR system and the G2G travel pass.
Flights in and out of Perth for vaccinated travellers are set to return in a mater of weeks (pictured: Perth Airport in 2020) 
It comes as the government prepares to ramp up restrictions for the unvaccinated ahead of the February 5 border reopening.
Details are expected to be confirmed later this week but those who refuse to get vaccinated face being locked out of pubs, restaurants, cafes and gyms.
‘There will be significant limits on the things you can do,’ Ms Sanderson said.
Almost 94 per cent of West Australians aged 12 and over have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while the double-dose vaccination rate is nearing 87 per cent.
The WA government said while the border will open there would be ‘significant’ restrictions left in place particularly for  those not double-vaxxed (pictured: Perth locals in December)
Published by Associated Newspapers Ltd
Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group


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