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New COVID-19 variant discovered

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Jun 4, 2021

CHIEF Health Officer Brett Sutton said at the Victorian Government press conference on June 4 that a new variant of COVID-19 has been detected in four cases.

The Delta strain is believed to be highly infectious. It is the strain which spread quickly through India and is present in the UK. Although the Delta strain has previously been detected in Australia in hotel quarantine, this is has a unique sequence and “has not been linked to any sequence cases across Australia from hotel quarantine or anywhere else. It is not linked in Victoria or any other jurisdiction.”

They are seeking to identify all of the close contacts of the family involved, as well as trying to identify the source of the infection.

A family of three, two adults and one child, is among the cluster. They also have another child who returned an indeterminate result. This will be clarified in coming days and is “likely to become positive.”

The fourth positive case today was another child who was in quarantine during their infectious period.

The family had travelled to Jervis Bay in NSW and returned along the Hume Freeway.

The authorities are planning to re-sequence the results to see if there are any potential linkages to any other cases.

It has not been determined whether the infection occurred in NSW or Victoria. Efforts are underway to determine the source.

“We need to follow every line of investigation,” Mr Sutton said.

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