The Channel Nine presenters David Campbell and Belinda Russell are being tested for coronavirus because they interviewed Rita Wilson at the network’s Sydney studios on Monday.
Wilson and her husband, Tom Hanks, were diagnosed with coronavirus while in Australia and are in isolation at a Gold Coast hospital.
Campbell, Russell and a number of unnamed Nine staff who came into contact with the visiting singer and producer have gone into self-isolation and are being tested.
Campbell told 2GB Wilson had not shaken hands when she visited Nine on Monday.
“She came into the Today Extra studios on Monday and she was delightful and really nice and she didn’t have any symptoms of anything,” Campbell said.
“She was cautious. She actually made a joke coming into the studios, saying we shouldn’t shake hands, we should bump elbows. So we bumped elbows.”
Nine said A Current Affair’s host, Tracy Grimshaw, had not been in contact with Wilson but would not front the program on Thursday “as a precautionary measure”. Grimshaw, 59, is recovering from surgery.
“Nine today has taken action in line with our crisis response plan around a visit to our studio by Ms Rita Wilson on Monday this week, for an appearance on Today Extra with David Campbell and Belinda Russell,” Nine said on Thursday, hours after news broke about Hanks and Wilson.
“Our actions are in line with the guidelines set out by the government and health authorities.
“Those who were in prolonged contact with Ms Wilson have been tested and are self-isolating for 14 days.”
Nine would not detail how many staff are affected but it’s understood that Campbell, Russell and Grimshaw are the only on-air personnel to have been sent home.
Areas of the network’s northern Sydney studios in Willoughby are being disinfected.
The Today show co-host Karl Stefanovic will host ACA on Thursday and presenters for Today Extra are yet to be confirmed. Today Extra is a daily morning show which follows Today with Stefanovic and Allison Langdon at 9am.
Hanks wrote on Instagram that the couple “felt a bit tired, like we had colds, and some body aches’ and were tested for the coronavirus.