Covid Recap For Friday December 31

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Covid summary for Friday:

  • Australia records more than 32,000 cases
  • PM announces change to isolation time
  • SA to drop entry testing requirements for domestic travellers
  • SA scraps quarantine for vaccinated overseas arrivals
  • SA adopt a different definition of close contact and isolation times
  • Testing sites across SA and Victoria close due to extreme heat
  • NT introduces indoor masks after 60 Covid cases
  • NT to adopt the new national close contact definition
  • Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) sell out leaving governments scrambling for supplies
  • Travis Head tests positive to Covid
  • Seven players from the Melbourne Stars Big Bash League team have tested positive
  • New Year’s Eve celebration warning as Covid cases surge
  • The NY Times is reporting Australia has the fastest growing Covid outbreak in the world right now.

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Case number across the country reported on Wednesday: 

  • New South Wales record 21151 new cases and six deaths
  • Victoria record 5919 new cases and seven deaths
  • Queensland record 3118 new cases
  • South Australia record 2093 new cases and two deaths
  • Queensland record 3118 new cases
  • Tasmania record 137 new cases
  • Northern Territory record 60 new cases
  • Australian Capital Territory record 462 new cases
  • Western Australia records one new case

Meanwhile, in less than 24-hours since announcing changes to testing and isolation rules, Prime Minister Scott Morrison revealed the day-six RAT test would no longer be required if a Covid-positive person was asymptomatic. 

“Further to National Cabinet on 30 December 2021 and following further consultation with the Chief Medical Officer and Chief Health Officers, leaders have also agreed to remove the requirement for a Day 6 RAT for confirmed cases in isolation,” a national cabinet update said.

“If confirmed cases remain symptomatic, they should remain in isolation. Anyone with symptoms will continue to seek a PCR test”.

It follows Morrison’s announcement after the cabinet meeting on Thursday, where he said that Omicron was a “game changer” and that the country was “going through a gear change” in its approach to Covid, requiring a “reset”.

But whether the political rhetoric of “personal responsibility” continues to steer leaders abdicating responsibility, or a ‘gear change’, actually shifts the hot air to prioritising the national interest, remains to be seen.

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31 December 2021

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