A child and an adult from a family group of seven quarantined in a Sydney hotel have been confirmed to have the coronavirus.
Three children from the family were taken from the Hilton hotel to Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital late on Tuesday.
Video shot outside the hotel showed the children on stretchers wearing protective face masks and being wheeled out of the hotel by paramedics.
On Wednesday, NSW chief health officer Kerry Chant said an adult and one of the children had tested positive for COVID-19.
The hotel is one of those being used to quarantine travellers who have returned to Australia from overseas.
Deputy chief medical officer Paul Kelly said on Wednesday he was aware of the cases but wouldn’t comment further.
Professor Kelly told Nine’s Today show that children could get catch the virus – and that was one of the reasons social distancing rules needed to be taken so seriously.
Also on Wednesday, the first group of 288 Australians quarantined under strict coronavirus measures were released from the nearby Swissotel.
This group arrived in Australia from Hawaii on March 26. They had been passengers on the Norwegian Jewel cruise ship.
The group have now completed their mandatory 14-day self-isolation, to protect the community from the coronavirus.
Gold Coast woman Christine Cooper said she and her husband Graham had been well looked-after during the “long two weeks”.
“It’s weirder getting out,” Ms Cooper said on Wednesday.
“You feel like an inmate that’s been in jail and now you’ve been released.”
Mr Cooper said they had been well fed at the Swissotel.
“The food was as good as you could get under the circumstances, and plentiful,” he said.
Another traveller, Rachel Deering, said hotel staff had been accommodating.
However, she said parts of the quarantine process were “inhumane”.
“There’s a lot that needs to be changed,” she told the ABC.
“We fully support the concept of quarantine but this is a very ill-conceived plan – very poorly executed.”
All in the group were to get letters confirming their isolation periods and have final health checks before leaving, under police supervision.
Police are also expected to supervise further hotel departures at the weekend, with 3000 Australian residents expected to come out of hotel isolation across the country in the next week.
“[On] Sunday, we start to see thousands of people come out of the Sydney hotels and head home. And I think that’s a wonderful thing for all of those Australians,” NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said on Wednesday.
“We thank them for their patience, and really protecting the safety of the people of NSW.”
NSW recorded another 49 coronavirus cases on Tuesday, bringing its total to 2686.
While the number of new cases in NSW continues to stabilise, authorities remain concerned about 406 locally-acquired cases with an unknown source.
The latest deaths include a 90-year-old male resident of the Opal Care Bankstown aged care facility and an 87-year-old woman who was a passenger on the Ruby Princess cruise ship.
Of the 21 NSW deaths so far, five are linked to the Ruby Princess, six were residents at Dorothy Henderson Lodge and two were residents at Opal Care Bankstown.