Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Preventing close contact isolation ‘sensible’ in areas of high vaccination: Australian epidemiologist

Other states may follow a decision made by New South Wales (NSW) to reduce the quarantine period for close contacts with double-dose COVID-19 as vaccination rates increase.

NSW is halving the two-week quarantine period for close contacts who have had two doses of the vaccine, until they test negative in six days.

University of Melbourne epidemiologist Tony Blakely called the decision a sensible one.

“Once there is increasing vaccine coverage across the population and we start living with the virus, these are the kind of rule changes you would expect,” he told ABC TV.

Pro. Blakely says that vaccination coverage in different states and territories will determine how quickly this approach is adopted elsewhere.

NSW has doubled to 67 percent of its population aged 16 and over.

He hopes Victoria, which has an absolute vaccination rate of 52 percent, can lead NSW in time.

Meanwhile, Melbourne has claimed the incredible title of most locked down city in the world.

The state capital on Monday ordered 246 days of stay-at-home orders.

This surpasses the record set by the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires.

Blakely has warned the fate of other states, particularly Queensland, in dodging major virus outbreaks may not continue indefinitely.

About 48 percent of the Sunshine State’s population over 16 is fully immunized.

This gives Queensland the second lowest vaccination rate in the country after Western Australia (WA).

“They have been very lucky to dodge the bullets so far. But the virus will get there at some point,” Blakely said.

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“I hope they can put that out and jump to that stage, up to 80 percent vaccination coverage.”

The National Rugby League grand final in Brisbane went ahead after Queensland reported no new infections on Sunday.

Victoria reported 1220 new cases and three deaths, and NSW reported another 667 local infections and 10 more deaths.

WA health officials were monitoring an oil tanker that docked in Fremantle on Saturday after 12 crew members tested positive for COVID-19.

Four were in hospital in Perth, with the rest of the crew in isolation or quarantining on the ship.

A diplomat who tested positive while self-isolating on his return to Perth was shifted to a state quarantine facility with his family

The federal government defended its decision to withdraw financial aid in line with vaccination rates of 70 and 80 percent.

Finance Minister Simon Birmingham said some $20 billion had already been paid out and businesses needed to be able to reopen.

Labor frontbencher Ed Husick, who represents the NSW seat of Chifley, west of Sydney, acknowledged that support could not continue indefinitely.

He also warned that industries such as hospitality and entertainment will not be able to return to normalcy at 80 per cent vaccination.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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