The 95-year-old woman was under the care of the 50-year-old female carer, but it is unclear whether she had the virus at this stage.
The carer has been confirm as one of the of the seven new NSW victims in the past 24 hours.
She worked at the Dorothy Henderson Lodge in Macquarie Park, in Sydney’s north west, with 13 residents. Eleven of them have been isolated.
Two of the residents displayed respiratory-related illness symptoms. One was a 95-year-old woman who has died. It’s unclear whether at this stage whether either of them had the coronavirus.
It’s been confirmed she did not leave Australia recently and is the third case of human-to-human transmission within the country.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the carer was working on 24 February when she started developing flu-like symptoms.
“And so we did the checks. And, of course, we’re aware that it’s likely that she could have been capable of passing on the coronavirus from at least the day before, 24 hours, so that’s 23 February,” he said.
He said the woman was a “much-loved” and longstanding member of staff at a residential care home which is part of Baptist Care.
“It is concerning when we have somebody present with coronavirus and we can’t track the source,” Mr Hazzard said.
“In this case, this much-loved staff member had not travelled. She had not been overseas. She had not been to any of the hot spots around the world. So, that raises the question, how did she end up with coronavirus?”
This comes amid fears Sydney doctor may have spread the coronavirus to a large number of patients.
Forty staff members who work closely with the 53-year-old male doctor at Ryde Hospital have been isolated.
They include 13 doctors, 23 nurses and four other health workers. The infected doctor is in a stable condition at Westmead Hospital.
However, authorities say the doctor had already come into contact with a “large and diverse” range of patients in his workplace.
“We still don’t know how he acquired the infection,’’ NSW chief health officer Kerry Chant said.
“We are doing an investigation as we speak. He did not care for any of our positive cases but we are doing some additional investigations into what patients he saw, to see whether there were any undiagnosed cases.”
A further eight patients of the doctor are showing no symptoms, while 29 other patients identified as casual contacts are being chased up.
Also this morning, a man in Victoria has been diagnosed with coronavirus after travelling to Australia from Iran, taking the national total of cases to 42.
Victorian Health Minister Jenny Mikakos says the man in his 30s became unwell on Sunday after returning to Victoria from Iran on February 26.
He went to an emergency department after speaking with a nurse on call, with his positive test result confirmed late on Tuesday.