NSW Health has issued a public health alert after receiving notification a positive case of Covid-19 travelled from Sydney to Ballina on Virgin flight VA1139 on July 14.
In a statement released on July 25, NSW Health revealed all passengers on the flight are considered close contacts and have been directed to get tested and isolate for 14 days from the date of exposure, regardless of their test result.
It was later revealed during the Covid-19 media conference on the same day that the positive Covid-19 case had lied to authorities regarding his isolation status.
While addressing the media, Dr Jeremy McAnulty revealed the man had been tested on July 12 after he was identified as a close contact following a workplace exposure, and subsequently returned a false negative result.
He was required to isolate for 14 days following his test, but boarded flight VA1139 despite being aware of his status.
After arriving in Ballina, the man then travelled to Queensland.
His method of transportation was not released to the public.
Dr McAnulty revealed authorities were advised the man’s swab was in fact positive on July 20, and NSW Health immediately contacted and interviewed him.
The man stated he had been isolating since July 10, but Dr McAnulty revealed authorities found this was “not true.”
Dr McAnulty said he believed the man travelled to Queensland on July 14 and expressed his concerns regarding the nature and extent of exposure to the community in NSW and Queensland, and also during the flight.
“We are working with our colleagues in Queensland Health and have referred the matter to NSW Police,” Dr McAnulty said.
Please call 1800 943 553 unless you have already been contacted by NSW Health.