Blood tests have identified two people who contracted and recovered from coronavirus, taking Western Australia’s total case tally to 556 but leaving the number of active cases at six.
- One of the historical cases is a cruise ship passenger, the other a contact of another case
- Both contracted the virus about six weeks ago and are no longer infectious
- A person listed as one of the state’s active cases has been admitted to hospital
Health Minister Roger Cook said the two historical cases, both females from Perth, contracted the disease about six weeks ago and had not previously been counted in the state’s tally of cases.
Testing revealed the presence of COVID-19 anti-bodies and Mr Cook said it was likely there would be other such cases.
One of two historical cases was a cruise ship passenger, the other was a “casual” contact of another case.
Mr Cook said it was likely the cruise ship passenger had recovered from the disease by the end of the holiday.
“What we suspect in her situation is that she was actually ill on the cruise ship and by the time she returned to Western Australia she had actually completed her journey in relation to the disease,” he said.
“This was about six weeks ago, so it was some time in the past.
“I think she was unwell for a time, but not very unwell.”
Mr Cook said neither case posed a risk of further transmission.
“As we continue to test people through the taking of blood samples, and as we do more historical and deep research into this disease, we’ll see more of these cases come up from time to time,” he said.
Mr Cook said the historical cases should not be a major cause for concern, but the situation could have been worse.
“Because we know they haven’t actually infected other people, or if they have we’re on top of that element as well.
“But it’s a good indication of how infectious this disease is, and how important it is we do the right thing.”
WA COVID patient in hospital
Mr Cook said the state recorded no new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, although one of the people on the active case list has deteriorated and is now in hospital.
Prior to that development, there were no coronavirus patients remaining in WA’s hospitals.
He said the State Government remained confident there was no sustained community transmission of COVID-19 in WA.
Restrictions in WA will be eased on Monday, but Mr Cook again stressed the need for caution.
“We’re not out of the woods yet,” he said.