According to Queensland’s Chief Health Officer, COVID cases continue to grow and are roughly doubling every 48 hours. These numbers are expected to increase significantly as we go into January. 

The statistics as of Monday, 20 December 2021 are as follows:  

Victoria has recorded 1,302 new COVID cases, New South Wales recorded 2,501 new COVID cases, Tasmania recorded 3 new covid cases, Australian Capital Territory recorded 13 new COVID cases and Queensland has recorded 59 new COVID cases. 

Many States and Territories have reached high levels of individuals who are fully vaccinated with Queensland recording that more than 84% of individuals over 16 are now fully vaccinated, and almost 200,000 border passes have been issued for individuals entering Queensland. 

The Australian Capital Territory has recorded that 98.4% of individuals over 12 are now fully vaccinated. New South Wales has recorded that 93.4% of individuals over 16 are now fully vaccinated. Victoria has recorded that 92% of individuals over 12 are now fully vaccinated.  

However, as we go into the Christmas holidays there is a looming concern that our borders will be closed again, and further lockdowns will follow. With the spread of SARS-CoV-2 (also known as Omicron) Australia has accepted its fate of high COVID numbers going into 2022. New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard indicated that he was being prepared to accept 25,000 infections per day by January in the State.  

Deakin University’s chair of epidemiology, Professor Catherine Bennett has stated that it’s important to remember why Australia fought so hard to keep the virus out, and that was so we could get vaccinated.  

For those in Queensland, masks are mandatory in certain circumstances such as in airports and on domestic commercial flights. Furthermore, those arriving from overseas or COVID-19 hotspots who are required to quarantine must wear a mask when travelling from the airport to a quarantine hotel. This also applies to drivers transporting overseas or hotspot arrivals to quarantine locations. Masks are only recommended in situations where social distancing is not possible. 

There are currently no limits on the number of people who can gather in public outdoor spaces for Christmas, however gathers at private residences are currently limited to 100 people. 

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