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The doctor who picked up the first Parafield cluster patient, which triggered the second wave of South Australia coronavirus and a strict lockdown, has spoken for the first time.

The 81-year-old was attending a consultation with Dr. Dharminy Thurairatnam for separate health issues, when the doctor noticed she had a cough.

South Australia coronavirus.
Dr. Dharminy Thurairatnam, the physician who identified the first patient in Parafield’s group, has spoken for the first time. (9News)
Dr. Thurairatnam said she examined the elderly woman on November 13 as a mere precaution after months of state COVID free.

“I didn’t expect him to come back COVID-positive because we had no community transmission at the time,” Dr. Thurairatnam said.

I was surprised by the result.

“Oh my gosh, they’re kidding me,” Dr. Thurairatnam told her colleagues when the positive test result was revealed.

“I thought it could have been a lab error, but we retested it and it did indeed come back positive.”

People are seen queuing at the Parafield Gardens COVID testing center on November 17, 2020 in Adelaide, Australia.  (Photo by David Mariuz / Getty Images)
South Australians queued for hours at the Parafield Gardens COVID-19 testing center at the start of the second wave. (Getty)

After two weeks of quarantine and being free of coronavirus, today is the first time that Dr. Thurairatnam has spoken about her efforts.

Despite being labeled a heroine, the doctor turned her attention to the people of South Australia.

“Am I a hero? No. I am very honored by the answer,” she said.

“I feel like I’m in a dream.

“We would not have achieved what we have without (South Australians) volunteering and cooperating.”

South African Health Minister Stephen Wade used Dr. Thurairatnam’s actions as a reminder to thank all health workers in the state.

“Today is a day to celebrate, to celebrate the 45,000 health workforce in South Africa,” Wade said.

Medical staff speak to people at a station at Parafield Airport in Adelaide during the first day of the statewide total lockdown to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus on November 18, 2020. (AFP via Getty Images)

South Australia has recorded no new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, SA’s director of public health, Professor Nicola Spurrier, announced this morning.

This comes as the number of coronavirus tests reached 6736 overnight.

The total number of active cases in the state remains at 10.

“This is very good news for South Australia,” said Professor Spurrier, as the number of South Australians in quarantine dropped to 1,000.

SA Director of Health Professor Nicola Spurrier provides an update on COVID-19, Wednesday, December 2, 2020. (9News)

“I was very pleased to speak to this person and that he accepted my apologies,” said Professor Spurrier.

She expressed her empathy for the man and the ridicule he received on social media.

“I’d be happy to meet with him once the quarantine is over,” he said.


www.9news.com.au

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