Hundreds of people are ALREADY infected but don’t know it, top virus doctor warns – and the worst is yet to come
- Hundreds of Australians are likely to already be infected with the deadly virus
- Clusters of the disease are already forming, causing it to spread quicker
- Doctors warned that each infected person is likely to infect at least two others
- At a Sydney care home, four patients and three members of staff are infected
- On Saturday, a doctor in Toorak, Victoria was diagnosed after a trip to the US
Australia is on track to suffer a coronavirus pandemic, with dangerous clusters of the respiratory disease already forming, experts have warned.
It comes as Australia’s number of cases rose to 67 overnight, with eight cases where the patient hadn’t travelled overseas – known as human-to-human transmission.
All of these are in Sydney’s north, around the epicentre of Epping, Ryde and Macquarie Park.
In another worrying case, a doctor from Toorak in Victoria was diagnosed with the disease on Saturday morning – after treating 70 vulnerable patients.
John Dwyer, emeritus professor of medicine at the University of NSW, said the situation is ‘going to get a lot worse before it gets better’.
He also warned that hundreds of Australians are already infected, but aren’t aware yet, and that every infected person goes on to infect at least two others.
‘We are definitely going to have a pandemic in Australia,’ Professor Dwyer told the Australian.
This is not an article I wish to post, but in the words of Chris Martenson
When we see the numbers rising….
Remember; it’s case, case, case, cluster, clusters, boom!
The total number of coronavirus cases in Australia rose to 67 overnight, with several people infected in Sydney’s north-west – making the country’s first ‘cluster’ of the disease
‘The experience with other epidemics is that once this happens, there must be hundreds of people who are infected in Australia at this stage.
‘And for every one infected person, the average is they will infect two and a half others.’
To date, the virus has infected more than 100,000 people and killed more than 3,300 worldwide.
It comes as tens of thousands of Australians were forced into isolation, with offices, schools and even a maternity ward going into lockdown over coronavirus fears.
Health officials are seen at the aged care home in Macquarie Park, where one woman died and a further two residents caught coronavirus after a staff member became infected
Macquarie Park (pictured), 13km north-west of Sydney’s CBD, has become Australia’s coronavirus epicentre – with seven people infected and a childcare centre dramatically shut
Health workers at Canterbury, Liverpool and Ryde Hospitals in New South Wales have been struck by the deadly respiratory disease, forcing dozens into isolation.
At the embattled Dorothy Henderson Lodge aged care centre in north-west Sydney, vulnerable, elderly residents face a terrifying wait – as two more workers tested positive.
One resident, 95, has already died after contracting the disease, with staff now refusing to work at the centre – forcing NSW Health to send in its own team.
NSW chief health office Dr Kerry Chant told reporters on Friday: ‘We’ve had another worker at the aged care facility confirmed today, that takes it to four residents and two health care workers.’
A woman wears a face mask in Sydney’s Chinatown on March 4, as cases of the coronavirus continue to rise
Epping Boys High School (pictured), in Sydney’s north-west, will be closed on Friday after a 16-year-old boy was diagnosed with coronavirus
‘We could see other cases in that nursing home and that wouldn’t surprise me, what we are trying to do is stop further spread.’
Meanwhile, the 17 children from the Banksia Cottage day care centre, who visited the Lodge last week have tested negative for coronavirus.
But a 16-year-old boy at the nearby Epping Boys High School is now battling the disease in hospital, forcing the school to close.
It is the first school in Australia to close down, after similar action was taken in Italy, Japan, South Korea and France.
The teenage boy’s mother works at Ryde Hospital, alongside a 53-year-old doctor who is already infected.
That hospital has seen 40 medical staff forced into isolation, including 13 doctors, 23 nurses and four others.
A further eight patients of the doctor are showing no symptoms, while 29 other patients identified as casual contacts are being chased up.
But in more worrying news, NSW officials revealed on Friday that a woman previously diagnosed with the disease had been working at Canterbury Hospital in western Sydney.
The maternity centre at the Sydney Adventist Hospital in Wagroonga was put into lockdown on Friday amid fears patients and their babies could be left vulnerable to the disease.
Visitors are still being allowed into Mater Hospital’s maternity ward, but are being asked to stay away if a person is ill or has flu-like symptoms.
A woman loads her daughter into the car after taking her out of the Macquarie Park childcare centre early on Thursday. She said she was worried about her children catching the virus
Banksia Cottage childcare centre (pictured) in Sydney’s north-west is just across the road from Dorothy Henderson Lodge aged care complex where multiple cases of the infectious disease have been reported this week
On Friday night, authorities confirmed two more workers at the Dorothy Henderson Lodge aged care centre were diagnosed.
The 24-year-old woman and 21-year-old man are now being treated.
Four residents and three staff members have been confirmed as cases at the facility to date. Another 18-year-old woman was also diagnosed on Friday night.
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA CLIMB TO 75
NEW SOUTH WALES: 38
Three men aged 43, 53, and 35 who had recently travelled to China contracted the disease.
Two flew in from Wuhan while the other arrived in Sydney from Shenzhen, south China.
They were treated in isolation at Westmead Hospital.
A 21-year-old woman is identified as the fourth person to test positive for the illness in NSW.
The woman, a student at UNSW, flew into Sydney International Airport on flight MU749 on January 23 and presented to the emergency department 24 hours later after developing flu-like symptoms.
A man in his 40s is confirmed as the fifth coronavirus case in the state and a woman in her 50s as the sixth. Both returned to Sydney from Iran.
The 41-year-old sister of a man who had returned from Iran with the disease was one of three confirmed cases. The second locally-acquired case was a 53-year-old male health worker who hadn’t travelled for many months.
The other new case is a 31-year-old man who flew into Sydney on Saturday from Iran and developed symptoms 24 hours later.
Six more cases are confirmed in NSW. They included a 39-year-old man who had flown in from Iran and a 53-year-old man who arrived from Singapore last Friday.
It also included two women aged in their 60s who arrived in Sydney from South Korea and Japan respectively.
A man in his 30s who returned from Malaysia to Sydney on Malindo Air flight OD171 on March 1 was also one of the six.
A 50-year-old carer was the final of the day’s six people diagnosed with coronavirus. The woman is a carer at a nursing home in Macquarie Park in Sydney’s north. She had not been overseas and contracted the virus in Australia.
A 95-year-old woman died at a Sydney hospital on Wednesday night after developing a respiratory illness from the coronavirus, bringing the death toll to two.
A Macquarie University lecturer tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday after returning from Iran.
A further six cases confirmed on Wednesday evening. They included an 82-year-old aged care resident from the Dorothy Henderson Lodge, where the 95-year-old woman was staying.
The new cases include a female doctor who works at Liverpool hospital, a female patient from the Northern Beaches, a male from Cronulla, a woman who returned from the Phillippines and a woman in her 70s.
A health care worker, who attended the same conference as the doctor from Ryde Hospital, also tests positive.
A boy from Epping Boys High School is diagnosed with COVID-19 forcing the school to temporarily close.
A Goulburn resident who had recently returned from Singapore and travelled on to Darwin was also diagnosed with the virus
A fourth resident, aged 94, from the Dorothy Henderson Lodge aged care facility in Macquarie Park was also diagnosed
Two more workers at the Dorothy Henderson Lodge aged care centre are diagnosed with coronavirus
A 24-year-old female and 21-year-old male have now been confirmed as cases at the facility
An 18-year-old female has also been diagnosed
Six new cases are diagnosed. This includes a man in his 50s and a woman in her 40s, who are close contact of a previously confirmed case.
Also included was a man in his 40s and a woman in her 40s, both family members of a previously confirmed case.
A man in his 20s, also a close contact of a previously confirmed case, was also included.
A man in his 70s, who returned from Italy and who exhibited symptoms a day after returning. NSW Health is contacting flight passengers on flight number QR908 which left Doha on 1 March.
A second male in his 40s, who is a known close contact of a previously confirmed case, is being tested. He travelled on two domestic flights on 28 February while symptomatic but before he had been identified as a close contact.
Another man in his 60s who recently returned from Italy and a second man in his 40s who is a known close contact of a previously confirmed case, were confirmed late Saturday.
NSW Health says the man in his 40s travelled on two domestic flights on 28 February while symptomatic
A Chinese national aged in his 50s becomes the first confirmed case of the coronavirus in Australia.
The man flew to Melbourne on China Southern flight CZ321 from Wuhan via Guangzhou on January 19.
He was quarantined at Monash Hospital in Clayton in Melbourne’s east.
A Victorian man in his 60s is diagnosed with the coronavirus.
He became unwell on January 23 – two days after returning from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak.
The man was confirmed as positive on January 29 and was subsequently seen by doctors at the Monash Medical Centre.
A woman in her 40s is found to have coronavirus.
She was visiting from China and mostly spent time with her family.
She is being treated at Royal Melbourne Hospital.
A woman in her 20s in Melbourne is found to have the virus.
Two passengers taken off the Diamond Princess cruise ship test positive.
Another passenger taken off the cruise ship tests positive.
Victorian man confirmed to have coronavirus after the 78-year-old was evacuated to Melbourne from a Darwin quarantine centre.
It is confirmed a Victorian woman in her 30s has tested positive for coronavirus after flying from Malaysia to Melbourne via Indonesia.
Victorian man in his 30s confirmed to have coronavirus after returning from Iran. Health Minister Jenny Mikakos said the man was ‘almost symptom-free’ after self-isolating
A doctor working at a clinic in Toorak, Melbourne has been confirmed to have coronavirus and is now in isolation at home after returning from a trip to the US.
The doctor came into contact with around 70 patients who have been told to self isolate.
Queensland confirms its first case after a 44-year-old Chinese national was diagnosed with the virus. He is being treated at Gold Coast University Hospital.
A 42-year-old Chinese woman who was travelling in the same Wuhan tour group as the 44-year-old man tests positive. She is in Gold Coast University Hospital in stable condition.
An eight-year-old boy was diagnosed with coronavirus. He is also from the tour group where the other Queensland cases came from.
A 37-year-old man, who was a member of a group of nine Chinese tourists in quarantine on the Gold Coast, also tested positive.
A 37-year-old woman was diagnosed with coronavirus from the same travel group that flew to Queensland from Melbourne on January 27.
Two Queensland women, aged 54 and 55, tested positive for COVID-19 and will be flown to Brisbane for further treatment.
A 57-year-old woman from Queensland also tested positive for the virus.
A 63-year-old woman was confirmed to have the virus after returning to the Gold Coast from Iran.
A 20-year-old man from China was confirmed as the tenth person to be infected by the coronavirus in Queensland. The man had travelled to Dubai for at least 14 days before entering Australia, via Brisbane on February 23.
A 26-year-old man from Logan in Brisbane is diagnosed with coronavirus. He arrived back in Australia from Iran.
An 81-year-old man who had returned to Brisbane from Thailand and a 29-year-old woman who had come via Singapore from London are diagnosed with coronavirus.
A 28-year-old man in Brisbane was diagnosed after returning from Iran
SOUTH AUSTRALIA: 7
A Chinese couple in their 60s who arrived in Adelaide from Wuhan to visit relatives are confirmed to have coronavirus.
A 24-year-old woman from South Australia was transferred to Royal Adelaide Hospital.
Mother, 40, is diagnosed after flying to Australia from Iran via Kuala Lumpur.
Another 24-year-old woman, not related to the previous woman, was in a stable condition in Adelaide hospital after falling ill following overseas travel.
The eight-month-old child of the 40-year-woman, diagnosed on March 4, is also diagnosed with coronavirus.
Renowned Australian music composer Brett Dean, 58, who travelled to SA on March 3 from Taiwan also tests positive. He’s receiving treatment in an Adelaide hospital.
WESTERN AUSTRALIA: 3
A 78-year-old man from Western Australia was transferred to Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in Perth. On February 28, he was taken into intensive care in a ‘serious’ condition and later died. His wife was also diagnosed with coronavirus.
The elderly man died in the early hours of the morning from the virus at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.
A woman in Perth is diagnosed with the virus after flying into the city from the UK, via Dubai
The man who travelled from Iran to Australia on Saturday tested positive for COVID-19.
NORTHERN TERRITORY: 1
A tourist in Darwin has tested positive for coronavirus in what is the first confirmed case in the Northern Territory.
NT Health confirmed the 52-year-old man as the first case of COVID-19 in the community on Wednesday evening.
The man recently arrived in Darwin via Sydney and has had limited contact with the local community, NT Health said in a statement.