More COVID samples show up in Qld wastewater, Gympie ignored
More COVID samples have turned up in wastewater at Mackay North and Cairns after Queensland Health confirmed it was not carrying out any tests in the Gympie region.
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On Wednesday afternoon Qld Health announced fragments of SARS-CoV-2 have been detected in the Mackay North and Cairns Marlin Coast sewage catchments.
“Mackay North receives sewage from the suburbs of Beaconsfield, Richmond, Shoal Point, Bucasia, Blacks Beach, Rural View, Eimeo and Dolphin Heads, while Cairns Marlin Coast receives sewage from the suburbs of Barron, Kamerunga, Macalister Range, Yorkeys Knob, Caravonica, Trinity Beach, Smithfield, Palm Cove, Trinity Park, Clifton Beach and Kewarra Beach,” the announcement said.
Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said continued detections across the state was becoming “more concerning”.
Despite this the state’s health authorities indicated this week that there was no apparent plan to include the Gympie region in the statewide wastewater surveillance program for COVID-19, despite recent positive tests being recorded nearby at Maryborough, Nambour and Maroochydore.
A Queensland Health spokesperson said on Tuesday that more testing locations might be added to the program in the future.
Gympie Regional Council indicated it had no idea if or when Queensland Health would choose to test the region’s wastewater.
The Gympie Times readers voted strongly for some measure to be introduced through a Facebook callout yesterday morning, with 94 of 112 respondents indicating they thought local wastewater should be tested for COVID-19.
Just 8 people indicated they did not think testing was necessary.