Australia needs a plan to beat COVID-19.
But almost 2 years into this pandemic, we're still experiencing outbreaks and lockdowns because the Morrison Government has failed Australia on vaccines and on quarantine.
We’ve seen outbreaks from hotel quarantine, and the vaccine rollout has been bungled from the very beginning.
Scott Morrison says it’s not a race, but he’s wrong. Millions of Australians suffering lockdowns know it’s a race. Mr Morrison doesn’t have a plan to beat COVID-19 – but we do.
Labor’s COVID Approach:
Safely managing the Covid pandemic will require:
A speedy vaccination rollout
A safe end to lockdowns
Protecting our children
Preparing for the future – post vaccination
Four tests for safely ensuring the National Plan
The Doherty Modelling makes clear if the track, trace, isolation and quarantine (TTIQ) operations aren’t maintained at optimal effectiveness, we will see thousands and thousands of hospitalisations and many hundreds more deaths.
Our trace-and-track systems are already starting to break down, particularly in Sydney where they have stopped listing daily cases in the community and mystery cases.
The only Commonwealth contribution to our track-and-trace system has been the failed COVIDSafe app which has been completely ineffective.
A nationwide contact tracing app is central to an effective trace-and-track system - like the UK where they have the NHS app.
Strong and Safe Hospitals
This third wave is an unmitigated disaster that is getting worse by the day, not better.
It is already starting to overwhelm the New South Wales hospital system - hospitalisations have increased by 60 per cent in just ten days.
We've been drawing attention to this for days now - calling on Scott Morrison to do something concrete to support the people of New South Wales, but all we’ve got from him is more spin.
Remarkably, the Morrison Government has only now written to the hospital system about the capacity of their intensive care systems – 18 months into the pandemic.
New South Wales hospitals are at breaking point with worse yet to come, but Scott Morrison has no plan to guarantee our hospitals remain safe and strong.
No group left behind
Scott Morrison has left so many Australians behind in the vaccine rollout.
We are seeing the devastating impacts of that across Western and Far West New South Wales at the moment.
People living with disabilities are still struggling to get a vaccine. Indigenous Australians, a priority group in 1B of the vaccine rollout, have an appallingly low vaccination rate right now.
To guarantee the national plan is implemented safely, Scott Morrison needs to ensure no group is left behind.
Scott Morrison needs to stop playing word games with Australia's parents.
He needs to explain why Australia is so far behind so many other countries in protecting our 12 to 15-year-olds.
The US and Canada started vaccinating that age group in May. Many European nations and Israel started in June.
Canada has now fully vaccinated 60 per cent of their 12 to 15-year-olds. We’ve done absolutely zero.
Scott Morrison continues to say our children will not be counted as part of the national plan.
At the very least then Australia's parents deserve a separate commitment about when their 12 to 15-year-old children will be fully vaccinated.
Australians desperately want to see our kids get back to school, but we don't want to see them coming home with COVID.