Blackwater man did not have COVID-19, officials confirm
The miner, who had underlying health issues, was believed to be Australia’s youngest COVID-19 victim when Queensland Health last week announced that he had tested positive after his death.
It sparked an urgent hunt for the source and hundreds of tests among the local community.
Queensland Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young released a public statement on the case last night.
“On May 27, a post-mortem test on a man from Blackwater returned positive for COVID-19 and his partner confirmed he had been unwell with flu-like symptoms for a number of weeks,” she said.
“On that basis Queensland Health established a rapid public health response, including quarantining and testing close contacts, expanding COVID-19 testing in Blackwater and talking to the community, as it would expect us to do.
“The Coroner tonight advised that further tests have returned negative for COVID-19. He is yet to determine the man’s cause of death.”
“We have just got word from our staff member/Nathan’s partner that his autopsy report has come in and Nathan has been CLEARED as COVID 19 NEGATIVE !!!! Now his loved ones can be left in peace and Nathan can finally RIP x Our thoughts are with everyone who has been directly impacted by this whole ordeal, and the little community of Blackwater can now breathe easy.”
The news drew many comments on social media expressing sympathy at what family and friends have been through, as well as anger. The responses included a change.org petition calling for an official apology over the affair.
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