I have removed Greater Brisbane from its listing as a Commonwealth hotspot, effective from 12:01am on 17 January.
This is a time for the people of Brisbane to congratulate themselves for undertaking the short and sharp restrictions that have enabled public health officials to get ahead of the virus, backed up by consistent testing numbers. It is also a time to thank all staff at Queensland Health for their work in tracing contacts and getting to the stage where I am able to say there is low risk of transmission of the variant B.1.1.7 in Greater Brisbane.
The first transmission event is considered to have been on January 2 and occurred on the 7th floor of the Grand Chancellor. If there has been only one transmission event, the risk from this event is very low as 14 days have passed.
The last day that a person from the cluster was infectious in the community was 6 January, and there are no new cases from the Grand Chancellor hotel cluster of six cases who are all in quarantine.
This hot spot was declared out of an abundance of caution because we saw for the first time a case of this new more transmissible strain in the community. The hot spot declaration triggered support from the Commonwealth to Greater Brisbane, particularly in aged care.
Like so many instances throughout the pandemic, we’ve now seen another success story in our response.
Australians have been magnificent throughout what has been a very difficult year. At a time when COVID-19 continues to have a devastating impact across many parts of the world, Australia now has no Commonwealth declared hotspots across the country.