Spike in Queensland COVID-19 infections Spike in Queensland infections with 18,000 recorded overnight

Queensland has recorded 18,000 new COVID-19 cases after online rapid antigen test (RATs) results were included in the daily total for the first time, while Premier Annastacia Palaszcuk announced students will not return to school at the end of the holidays.

Ms Palaszcuk confirmed 4320 of the new cases are from RATs.

This brings active cases to 18,573 and the new cases come from 37,591 test results.

There are 402 people in hospital, including 22 in ICU and five requiring ventilation.

The state yesterday launched its online registry for positive rapid antigen test results.

People who test positive at home can now visit the government’s COVID-19 website and register their positive RAT result.

Yesterday, the state recorded 11,174 new COVID-19 cases, and today’s jump in figures is due to the rapid antigen tests being included.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath urged anybody who had tested positive with a RAT in the past 14 days to register their result to ensure numbers are as accurate as possible.

In yesterday’s figures, there was one new death reported.

A previously reported death of a man in his 30s at his home in the Gold Coast earlier this month was also confirmed by the coroner to be a COVID-19 case, bringing Queensland’s total number of fatalities during the pandemic to 10.

Return to school delayed for Queensland students

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed a two-week delay to primary and high school students returning to the classroom.

Ms Palaszczuk said students will now return to class on Monday, February 7.

“This is a delay, but it is a necessary delay due to the influx of cases that are coming,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“We are expecting the peak at the end of January and start of February.”

Ms Palaszczuk said year 11 and 12 students will commence remote learning from Monday, January 31 and special provision will be made for children of essential workers and teachers identified as close contacts when school returns.

Ms D’Ath yesterday announced Queensland’s public hospitals will suspend non-urgent elective surgery until March 1.

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She said this will be reviewed at the end of January, and “hopefully” its end date could be brought forward.

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