Anger as COVID clinic patients sneak off for coffee



Calls for police to be onsite at a southside shopping centre have arisen after a drive-through coffee shop next to a major COVID clinic was proving tempting to tested patients.

Under new COVID directives from the state government, those who get tested for coronavirus have to immediately quarantine or go into isolation.

However, residents of Logandale estate claim they have watched patients come out of the Shailer Park Respiratory Clinic, a private testing centre at Cornubia, get into their cars and then drive through the next-door Zarraffa's drive-through.

Clinic manager Damien Kiely said patients were told four times to go directly into quarantine and were warned about going shopping after being tested.

"We have been extremely busy testing up to 250 people a day since last week but we have not received direct complaints from Zarraffa's," he said.

"Zarraffa's at Riverlakes has been a drive-through now for nearly three weeks so it's not because of the latest testing in Logan.

"We have explained to everyone who comes into the clinic the importance of being patient and those who are early for their booked appointment have to wait in their cars.

"We want to be respectful to all the tenants in the complex because it is a troubling time for all small businesses and we don't want them to feel ostracised," he said.


Zarraffa’s drive-through at Cornubia.
Zarraffa’s drive-through at Cornubia.


Cornubia resident Susan Hindle said it was great that the clinic's management were taking steps to protect their staff.

"It's a pity that customers think their access to coffee is more important than the health of workers and their families."

Another resident Natalie Nisbet said she got tested at the Cornubia clinic.

"They told me to go straight to my car and go home, do not stop off anywhere until you get your results which only took 24 hours," she said.

"They are not hard instructions to follow. They also gave me a handout explaining it. People should work to protect our families, friends, community and state and do the right thing."

The maximum fine for breaching Queensland's public health orders is $4003, with 2168 fined issued worth $2,998,872 from March 27 to July 27.

People caught breaching coronavirus health restrictions could be sent to jail for up to six months, after harsher penalties were passed through parliament in July.


Originally published as Anger as COVID clinic patients sneak off for coffee