The hotel security guard whose COVID-19 infection plunged Western Australia into lockdown has finally been cleared to leave quarantine.
WA Health on Sunday confirmed the international student aged in his 20s and known as “case 903” had departed after three weeks in isolation.
Authorities last week said he had chosen to stay in quarantine beyond the mandatory 14 days after becoming unwell with an unrelated condition but declined to provide further details due to patient confidentiality.
Metropolitan Perth and nearby regions went into a five-day lockdown on January 31 after the guard unwittingly roamed the streets while infectious.
He contracted the highly-contagious UK variant of the virus while working at the Sheraton Four Points quarantine hotel in Perth’s CBD.
Authorities braced for a significant number of cases but a testing blitz produced no evidence of other infections in the community.
WA’s first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine has arrived, containing more than 4500 doses which will be administered from Monday.
Four trays of vials were transported from Sydney in a large esky containing dry ice before being stored in an ultra-cold freezer at Perth Children’s Hospital.
Quarantine and international border workers and high-risk frontline healthcare staff in aged and disability care will be first in line to get the jab.
An expert team from the Child and Adolescent Health Service will administer vaccinations at clinics at a designated quarantine hotel, Perth International Airport and Fremantle Port.
More than 200 West Australians will receive the jab on Monday.
“It’s a good soft launch,” Health Minister Roger Cook said.
“My message to all West Australians is that it’s the science that has protected WA during the COVID-19 pandemic … you can have confidence that this vaccine is safe and it’s effective.”
Prime Minister Scott Morrison was on Sunday among a group of 20 people to get the nation’s first coronavirus jabs.
Mr Cook said it was a good example to set the community but he and Premier Mark McGowan would wait their turns.