People waiting to be tested at the COVID pop up clinic at the Byron Bay Surf Club near Main Beach on Tuesday, May 30, 2021.
People waiting to be tested at the COVID pop up clinic at the Byron Bay Surf Club near Main Beach on Tuesday, May 30, 2021.

Why leaders had strong praise for COVID cases

Positive cases of COVID-19 linked with a Byron Bay hen’s party have been praised by a premier and two chief health officers.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said during a press conference the Northern NSW man who returned a positive test late on Tuesday night took exactly the right steps.

He had visited the Byron Beach Hotel at the same time as an infected hen’s party group from Queensland on the evening of Friday, March 26.

“The person did attend the same time at the same venue as the hen’s party,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“The good news is the person did take our advice and got tested and has been in isolation.”

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She said his – and the hen’s group’s – use the QR code at the venue was also a critical detail that helped to contain the situation.

NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant said the man “immediately did the right thing” when concerns about the venue’s COVID contact were released.

Dr Chant’s Queensland counterpart, Dr Jeannette Young, meanwhile praised the first nurse who was diagnosed in the cluster.

People waiting to be tested at the COVID clinic in Byron Central Hospital on Tuesday, March 30.
People waiting to be tested at the COVID clinic in Byron Central Hospital on Tuesday, March 30.

Genome testing indicated her infection came from a returned traveller from India; he has been at the PA Hospital.

“The nurse went down to Byron Bay and she was in a party of 10 and there was an entertainer involved so there were 11 people,” Dr Chant said.

“The nurse … really is to be commended.”

She said the nurse developed symptoms on Sunday morning and “immediately came forward and got tested”.

Her test was expedited and her positive result came through the same day.



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