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Infected ride-share driver sparks alert after hospital ‘disturbance’

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A man with COVID-19 who sparked a public health alert on the Gold Coast last week has been involved in a “minor disturbance” in hospital.

The man in his 30s has been undergoing treatment at the Gold Coast University Hospital since he was admitted there after testing positive for the virus at Robina Hospital on Wednesday.

Authorities said the man was infectious in the community for 10 days after returning to his Broadbeach home from Melbourne on October 10 without quarantining.

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Chief health officer Jeannette Young said the ride-share driver was so sick he had to be put on oxygen last week and was on the cusp of being moved into intensive care. His condition has reportedly improved, and he is now described as being in a serious but stable condition.

According to media reports, the man tried to escape from the hospital about 9pm on Sunday.

However, Queensland police described the incident as a “minor disturbance”, saying no laws were broken.

“Police are not investigating an incident at a health facility on the Gold Coast,” an official said in a statement on Monday morning.

“Around 9am yesterday police were called to a health facility due to a minor disturbance. The matter was resolved quickly and without any issue.

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“There was no breach of a Public Health Direction detected.”

Some media are reporting the man – who apparently still denies having the virus – remains under police guard in hospital.

Despite the man being in the community while infectious for 10 days, no locally acquired cases linked to him have emerged since he tested positive on Wednesday night.

Queensland had no community or hotel quarantine COVID cases on Monday, after among 5783 tests in the 24 hours to 6.30am.

Meanwhile, the state government is continuing to urge Queenslanders to get their virus shots before it eases restrictions on interstate travel in November and December.

Every Queenslander over 12 is eligible to be vaccinated.

The government will open up the state in three stages.

The first begins on November 19, when 70 per cent of Queenslanders aged 16 and over will have been double-dosed, allowing fully vaccinated people to quarantine at home.

On December 17, or earlier if Queensland hits 80 per cent before then, fully vaccinated domestic travellers can come into the state without having to quarantine although they must return a negative PCR test before arrival.

At 90 per cent, the state will scrap quarantine for all fully vaccinated overseas arrivals.

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As of Sunday, 74.8 per cent of eligible Queenslanders had received one dose of a vaccine and 60.4 per cent were fully vaccinated.

-with AAP

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