COVID-19 testing underway at Coast sewage plant

COVID-19 testing is taking place at the Hervey Bay sewage treatment plant.

The site is one of 10 in Queensland chosen to be part of a pilot program based on population and tourism hubs.

The program commenced mid-July and will run for 13 weeks.

The testing has already uncovered fragments of coronavirus at the Whitsundays.

Authorities are setting up a fever clinic in Airlie Beach today after coronavirus was detected in a sewage sample.

It is unknown whether the positive detection comes from someone who was infectious and symptomatic and did not get tested, or someone infectious but yet to develop symptoms.

It is understood it could also have come from a recovered COVID case shedding the virus.

Detections can provide an indication there are people in a particular wastewater catchment who have a current infection with COVID-19, or who have been infected in the recent past.

Deputy Premier Steven Miles said there was a renewed call to action for people in the Whitsundays to get tested to protect the community and the tourism sector in the region.

He said the government had been working with the University of Queensland on a surveillance program.

"Some results from that program have recently suggested there may have been a case of COVID-19 in the Airlie Beach area," he said.

"And with the utmost of caution the Mackay Hospital and Health Service is standing up a fever clinic in Airlie Beach today.

"We'd like to emphasise this is not considered a high-risk.

"We are taking this action with the utmost of caution and as part of our regular program of popping up fever clinics in tourist locations.

"We simply want to see an increase in the level of testing in that area so we can assure ourselves there isn't cases of community transmission there that we don't know about so we can keep our tourism industry there safe and open."

Mr Miles reported two news cases of COVID-19 in Queensland overnight, believed to be linked to the detention centre cluster.

He said the man and woman were aged between 30 and 39 years, with one of them working in an aged care facility.