Two patients at Canberra Hospital have tested positive to COVID-19 on Saturday.

The initial case presented to the hospital back on 18 September and was unknowingly infectious.

They’d been sharing a room with another patient, on Ward 10A of the hospital’s tower block where overnight both returned positive results for the virus.

Canberra health Services Acting CEO, Dave Pfeiffer said the affected ward has now been declared a ‘red zone’ and had been locked down.

“Patients and our team members are currently undergoing testing and no patients will be discharged from that ward until we have their test results back.”

Any patients who’ve been discharged or staff who’ve worked on the ward since the 18th are also being contacted for testing.

Both positive patients have now been moved to the dedicated COVID ward.

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Mr Pfeiffer said it’s not the first time this has happened and that proper procedures are in place to manage the spread of the virus.

“This has now occurred more than 20 times in our healthcare facilities and we are prepared for it, we have an expert infections prevention control team who is rapidly deployed to respond to these sorts of situations.”

The positive patients are included in the ACT’s 32 new cases of the virus reported on Saturday.

That number of new infections equaling the territory’s worst ever day of the pandemic so far when 32 cases were also recorded back on Saturday 4 September.

Included in the 32 is also a further 10 cases which can be linked to the outbreak of the virus at the Calvary Haydon Retirement Village in Bruce.

Of those one is a staff member, the remaining nine are residents.

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Chief Health Officer, Dr Kerryn Coleman warned the cluster is likely to grow further over the coming days but said, thanks to the vaccine, the ACT is better placed to manage the outbreak.

“What we know, of the staff, 100% percent have received their first dose of a COVID vaccine and 53% are fully vaccinated.”

Among the residents at the Village, 92% are fully vaccinated.

“So in this we we are very assured that the progress of this outbreak will be very different to what we saw last year.” Dr Coleman said.

Saturday’s COVID Summary:

  • 32 new cases
  • 26 are linked to previous cases, only 7 were in quarantine
  • 10 people are in hospital, 4 are in ICU, 3 on ventilator
  • 58.1% double dose vaccination rate
  • 2,952 tests carried out
  • 233 Active cases in the ACT
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