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Desperate scramble to uncover the truth behind Queensland’s mystery coronavirus case

Health authorities are scrambling to confirm whether the latest suspected  coronavirus case in Queensland is a positive result. 

Health Minister Steven Miles said a 68-year-old Ipswich woman returned a positive result for COVID-19 on Wednesday before a second swab showed ‘mixed results’ including a negative test.

‘She certainly tested positive on the first test, and that’s why we reported it,’ Mr Miles told ABC Radio

‘Subsequent tests came back negative, so we’re just working through what’s happened there.’

Mr Miles said a series of new tests will be conducted on Thursday to determine a conclusive result. 

‘We’re doing a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test, a serology test today and that will tell us one way or the other,’ he said. 

‘The stakes of that could be high.’ 

Mr Miles is concerned they haven’t yet been able to establish where the 68-year-old could have contracted coronavirus. 

‘We are starting to have more confidence that we’ve found all cases, but we won’t know for sure until we hit the 14 day mark,’ he said.

‘The weekend was tense, we thought there would be multiple outbreaks and we were concerned by the aged care facility… it was a relief when those 105 residents all tested negative.’

It was the only new case recorded in Queensland on Wednesday and if confirmed as a true positive it will bring the state’s total to 1,088 with six deaths.  

The possible case comes only days before Queensland will close its border to New South Wales from 1am on Saturday, August 8.  

The decision to close the border came after Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young declared NSW a coronavirus hotspot, which also includes the ACT. 

People from non-hotspot locations will have to travel to Queensland by air or via the Northern Territory border. 

The border closure will be reviewed again at the end of August. 

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