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South Australia has recorded a new coronavirus case, 12 days after the state’s last positive detection.

A Melbourne woman in her 20s travelling with family through SA to Alice Springs is now in quarantine.

Her family is being kept in isolation separately.

Professor Nicola Spurrier said the group had been travelling by air but had not been expected in South Australia.

She said she wanted to remind Victorians they could not transit through the state without permission by road or via air.

MORE TO COME.

Two positive tests in wastewater

Coronavirus has been detected in Adelaide’s wastewater for the first time, prompting an urgent public health alert for sick patients to seek COVID-19 testing no matter how mild their symptoms.

Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier today revealed two samples were detected at the Bolivar Treatment works and one at Angaston.

The Bolivar sample later tested negative.

Professor Spurrier said the Bolivar catchment included city hotels while Angaston was a freight route frequented by truck drivers, including from interstate.

She said SA Health was looking to expand regional testing sites from 3 to 6.

media_cameraChief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Naomi Jellicoe

She said while it was likely to the positive samples originated from an “active” – or infectious – patient, she could not rule out a mysterious case or was possible community transmission although unlikely.

Prof Spurrier, who announced the findings alongside Health Minister Stephen Wade and her deputy Dr Chris Lease, said the discovery reinforced a need for continued high levels of COVID-19 testing.

She said that anyone ill should have a virus check with even the mildest symptoms such as a runny nose, cough, sore throat, fever, headaches, and if a person’s taste or smell has suddenly disappeared.

Health authorities are confident there is no COVID-19 community transmission, in which an infection source remains unknown, throughout South Australia due to variety of factors.

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This includes no cases emerging in the state’s hospital wards or emergency departments, GP clinics or through testing. Testing figures have on Saturday hit 397,457.

SA Health figures show there were 3,405 and 3,963 daily rates of testing over the past two days.

Virus sleuths have been combing through wastewater as part of efforts to identify traces of the disease’s genetic material and stop the spread.

Experts say wastewater samples are unlikely to contain the live virus, minimising the risk of the research.

They say it will help public health workers identify the extent of COVID-19 infection within the community.

Wastewater sampling was launched in April at SA Water’s Bolivar, Christies Beach, Glenelg, Port Lincoln and Angaston treatment plants. Work began at Mt Gambier in July.

Wastewater tracing has already proved effective in identifying the virus’ genetic fingerprint in sewage in tests taken in Adelaide when there were active cases in the city.

Tests of wastewater in a city hotel recently also proved successful in finding the genetic material while three active cases were in quarantine.



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