Two Australian doctors infected with coronavirus attended a radiology seminar with as many as 70 fellow practitioners, according to new reports.
The Sydney-area doctors, a man who works at Ryde Hospital and a woman employed at Liverpool Hospital, tested positive for the deadly virus after the Feb. 18 gathering, News.com.au reported.
Now officials are trying to track down all the other attendees.
“We have had tracing going on,” New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard told reporters, according to the outlet. “This is a bit like a police investigation in a sense, trying to track who is coming into contact with who and what possible associations there may have been.
“New South Wales Health has been working very hard to try to contact each of those doctors and other attendees of the conference, so far it has been positive, nobody else showing any symptoms of coronavirus,” he added.
Because more than two weeks have passed since the workshop — and the incubation period is generally 14 days — Hazzard said he is feeling hopeful, according to 7 News.
Twenty-two coronavirus cases have been reported in New South Wales, local outlets reported.
Seven of those cases were transmitted from person to person, including to the female doctor, according to Hazzard.
Forty staff members who work closely with the male doctor at Ryde Hospital have been isolated, according to News.com.au.
Authorities also believe he came in contact with a “large and diverse” group of patients on the job.
“We still don’t know how he acquired the infection,” NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant told the outlet. “We are doing an investigation as we speak. He did not care for any of our positive cases, but we are doing some additional investigations into what patients he saw, to see whether there were any undiagnosed cases.”
Fifty-two coronavirus cases have been reported in Australia as a whole — including two deaths, according to health officials.
The symptoms of coronavirus include a fever, cough and runny nose — similar to those of the common cold or the flu.
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