Acting Chief Health Officer Peter Aitken previously predicted that Queensland would hit 90 percent in “early January”.
The next day, however, Deputy Prime Minister Steven Miles clarified whether anyone could take a short trip out of Queensland would depend on the “practice” of how quickly a negative test result could be returned.
“So of course you can not go on a day trip,” he said.
“If you get a test and get a negative result, you can return, so it’s really about the turnaround.
“The treatment time of the test varies from state to state, clinic to clinic, but the requirement is that you have a negative test result before you return.”
Can we take a quick escape when Queensland hits 80 percent?
A trip from Queensland to Byron Bay, for example, and then back again the same day, would be out of the question because you would have to get a COVID test immediately after arriving in NSW and it is unlikely that the results would come back. that day.
A two- or three-day trip from Queensland in mid-December to an interstate hotspot and then back again is possible, but you run the risk that a negative test result would not have come back.
A short trip across the border during the Christmas weekend – Christmas Day falls on a Saturday this year – can prove to be problematic as you will have to find an open clinic and hope that there are no delays during the Christmas season.
Queensland Health has not yet advised whether if the traveler returns a positive COVID result, they must be in hotel quarantine to enter Queensland or remain out of state for a certain period of time.
In fact, it will be easier for residents of NSW to take a day trip to Queensland under these rules, as they can get a test within three days of their holiday, and there is no requirement for them to test before returning home. .
Who pays for the COVID test?
Until this week, it was assumed that travelers would have to pay around $ 150 for a “gold standard” PCR test through a private pathology company to enter Queensland, as rapid antigen tests would not be accepted.
But Federal Health Secretary Greg Hunt said confirmation that an official text message would be accepted as evidence of a negative test meant it was covered by the 50-50 Commonwealth and the state government funding model.
This means that the test will be free for travelers as long as they are washed at a mass test clinic and not through a general practitioner, with the costs shared between the state government where they received the test and the Commonwealth.
The Queensland Premier had previously called for the tests to be paid for by Medicare before the 50-50 funding split was clarified.
Ms Palaszczuk said she found out travelers would not be lulled when Mr Hunt’s media statement was released, and she defended not to take the phone to the federal health minister to fix it because she “was not the health minister … I’m happy to pick up the phone [Prime Minister] Scott Morrison, and Scott Morrison also has my number ”.
NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet said PCR tests for surveillance when people showed no symptoms should be limited in the future, adding that it would be unsustainable to pass the cost on to domestic travelers.
Asked why NSW taxpayers should stop when Queensland made the rule, Mr Perrottet said he wanted to work on the premiere to resolve the matter.
A spokesman for NSW Health said the state government “is currently considering the consequences of the travel requirements imposed by other Australian jurisdictions”.
Who should be vaccinated and tested according to these rules?
The requirement to be fully vaccinated (meaning that two weeks have passed since your second dose) applies to everyone 12 years of age and older.
Everyone, including children and babies, will require a negative COVID-19 test before entering Queensland.
People still have to apply for a border pass of 80 per cent, which will be re-evaluated at 90 per cent.
With 90 percent, there will be no entry restrictions to Queensland for fully vaccinated travelers, so no COVID testing is required.
Queensland Health has not yet published the public health guidelines that support these rules, so further clarity is difficult to achieve.