18 October 2020

COVID-19 update – 18 October 2020

The Department of Health has reported three new cases of COVID-19 in Western Australia overnight.

Two of these cases, associated with the Key Integrity and AL Messilah vessels were confirmed yesterday. The Key Integrity case remains on the vessel, and the AL Messilah case remains in a State-run quarantine hotel. The third case is also an international worker in a State-run quarantine hotel.

The State total of confirmed COVID-19 cases now stands at 714.

There are 20 active cases and 685 people have recovered from the virus in WA.

The Key Integrity vessel will sail from Geraldton Port today bound for Fremantle Port. This will allow the Department of Health to manage the vessel in conjunction with the management of the AL Messilah. The vessel will arrive in Fremantle tomorrow morning.

The AL Messilah will for now, remain at its berth in Fremantle. The loading of the vessel remains paused – no livestock is onboard.

Management plans for both vessels will be determined with the shipping owners, shipping agents, port authorities and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.

The Department of Health continues to interview personnel who boarded the AL Messilah as per operational requirements for a livestock vessel – prior to the positive case being confirmed.

Ongoing contact tracing also continues related to the charter bus transfer and treatment at Fiona Stanley Hospital.

The contact tracing process is robust and thorough. For each person, several interviews are undertaken to ensure nothing is missed. The contact tracing team are also reviewing CCTV footage – as an added precaution. Western Australians should be reassured at the amount of work undertaken behind the scenes to keep our community safe. All contacts will be provided with requirements including appropriate isolation where required as determined by their circumstances. 

The Department of Health would like to reassure the community that outbreak management teams – comprising staff who have successfully managed four other vessels – are managing these vessels. There is no risk to the community.

No port in Western Australia is allowing shore-leave for any international maritime crew. This means that no crew on these vessels can disembark – expect for medical treatment – whereby appropriate safety procedures are put in place. This is an extra layer of border security in place to protect the Western Australian community.

Yesterday 465 people presented to WA COVID-19 clinics – 462 were assessed and swabbed.

There have been 458,327 COVID-19 tests performed in WA. Of those tested, 78,187 were from regional WA.

Visit WA Health’s HealthyWA website for the latest information on COVID-19. 

Media contact: 9222 4333
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