Australia’s health ministry on Wednesday reported its first locally acquired COVID-19 case in more than a month. The infection was registered in the most populous state of New South Wales (NSW).
The NSW health authorities rushed to trace the source of the novel pathogen. A man in his 50s was tested positive for the COVID after he had visited a movie theatre, restaurants, a service station and a meat store in Sydney’s eastern suburbs while unknowingly infectious.
Commenting on the case, NSW state Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said that the infected man has not travelled overseas in recent times and does not work in any high-risk jobs such as in hotel quarantine or hospitals.
“So all of the usual routes where we would expect someone to have acquired the infection are not clear,” Chant added. Close contacts have been asked to undergo tests and self-isolate.
Australia has largely contained the coronavirus outbreak through snap lockdowns, border controls and speedy contact tracing systems, with just over 29,800 cases and 910 deaths since the pandemic began. It has reported zero cases most days this year, Reuters reports.