Queensland COVID Review: Country records another COVID death, more than 20,000 cases

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Queensland COVID Review: Country records another COVID death, more than 20,000 cases

Tuesday’s case numbers are more than double Monday’s 9581, which were lower than expected because four private pathology labs were unable to report test results for Sunday.

The increase in case numbers is putting extra pressure on the state’s hospitals, with more than 500 patients being treated, and another 27 in intensive care.

Chief health officer John Gerrard said the number of ward patients was predicted to keep increasing until the second week of February.

Members of the public are seen in the Brisbane CBD. Credit: RUSSELL FREEMAN/AAPIMAGE

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  • The state also recorded one additional death, a man in his late 70s who had “very significant” underlying medical problems, Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said.

  • There are currently more than 109,000 active cases in the state.

“Those numbers will become quite significant in the coming weeks… and then hopefully, if the mathematical modelling is correct, it will start to decline after that,” Dr Gerrard said.

The expected rise in hospital admissions and “significantly more” ICU patients will be a tense time for healthcare workers, he said.

More than 2100 heath workers have tested positive for the virus, and another 2715 have been deemed close contacts. “There might be some close contacts who are being monitored and being swapped daily and working in the wards,” Dr Gerrard said.

Local residents line up at a drive-in testing centre in Brisbane. Credit: AAP Concern about the rate of infection on the Gold Coast remains as the holiday destination passes the 90 per cent single-dose vaccination mark.

“Disappointingly, what we’ve found on the Gold Coast is a lot of people not wearing masks,” Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll said on Tuesday. Police are running several operations in the region, including the Pacific Fair shopping centre, and say those flouting mask rules are “predominantly people visiting the state”.

The delay will allow most children to get vaccinated before school returns, Dr Gerrard said, but there will still be a surge when classes go back. Meanwhile, the government has postponed the start of the school year from January 24 until February 7 for most students, with Year 11 and 12 students to start online learning on January 31.