THE confirmed coronavirus case who was on a bus from Dickson to Kaleen on March 17 was not symptomatic at the time, says Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith.
Ms Stephen-Smith says the call to self-quarantine anyone who caught bus number 31, which left Dickson at about 3.50pm, is a highly precautionary action.
“It’s a highly precautionary approach to identify that bus route and ask people who were on that bus to identify themselves and to undertake self-quarantine,” she says.
“We are taking the precautionary approach of saying anyone who was in close contact with that person for the previous 24 hours, before they started to become ill, we are treating as a close contact because we don’t know where people were sitting on the bus, we don’t know which of those passengers may have been sitting close to that person.
“But it is a very, very low risk and a highly precautionary approach to identify that bus and ask passengers to identify themselves.”
Ms Stephen-Smith says the passenger on the bus was living in a household with a person who had returned from overseas in the past 14 days. The person who had returned from overseas was not a confirmed COVID-19 case at the time, and was self-quarantining, she says.
“We have a lot of travellers who have returned from overseas in the past 14 days and only a portion of those will develop COVID-19,” she says.
“They are required to self quarantine but their family members are not required to self quarantine but if they become symptomatic then their family members are required to self-quarantine. Generally that captures those people before they actually become symptomatic.”