A healthcare worker assists an international arrival to hotel quarantine in Melbourne (Image: AAP/James Ross)

A highly infectious strain of COVID-19 has landed in Australia, detected in returned travellers in NSW, WA, Victoria, and South Australia. 

The strain is circulating in the UK, may be up to 70% more infectious than other widespread variants, and has contributed to the decision to put England and Scotland into another lockdown.

Australian leaders think the threat to Australia is so serious that national cabinet will meet tomorrow, weeks ahead of schedule, to consider how to strengthen hotel quarantine.