National Cabinet Statement
The National Cabinet met today for the 52nd time to discuss Australia’s response to Covid-19, the recent outbreak of Covid-19 and Australia’s Covid-19 vaccine strategy.
The National Cabinet continues to work together to address issues and find solutions to the health and economic consequences of Covid-19.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, there have been 42,228 confirmed cases in Australia, and unfortunately, 974 people have died. More than 28.9 million tests have been performed. Testing has increased nationwide over recent days with 1,410,219 tests reported in the past seven days.
Globally, there have been more than 209.9 million cases of infection and more than 4.4 million deaths, with 665,241 new cases and 9,554 deaths reported in the past 24 hours. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to rise in many countries around the world.
The rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine in Australia continues to expand. To date, 16.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in Australia, including 303,304 in the past 24 hours.
In the past seven days, more than 1.7 million vaccines have been administered in Australia. More than 51% of the Australian population aged 16 and over has now received their first dose of Covid-19 vaccine, including more than 74.1% of those aged over 50 and more than 84.5% of those aged over 70.
More than 28.8% of Australians aged 16 and over are now fully vaccinated including more than 42.2% of those aged over 50 and more than 55.8% of Australians aged over 70.
Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly provided an update on the current Covid-19 outbreaks. The chief medical officer has announced a number of hot spots across Australia including Greater Sydney and rural New South Wales, Greater Melbourne and the Australian Capital Territory.
Leaders note that the existing health system capacity is capable of supporting current outbreaks.
Lt. Gen. John Frewin, the general coordinator of Operation Covid Shield, provided an update on the vaccine launch.
All leaders emphasized the importance of Australians, especially those in vulnerable groups, getting a Covid-19 vaccine. The AstraZeneca and Pfizer Covid-19 vaccines have been registered for use in Australia and have been shown to be effective in preventing serious illness and death, as well as reducing transmission.
The National Cabinet noted the work in progress through the Covid-19 Risk Analysis and Response Task Force Report and Doherty Modeling of the National Plan for Transitioning Australia’s National Covid Response.
The National Cabinet also noted the work of the Data and Digital Ministers meeting on integrating proof of vaccination status into existing state and territory check-in apps to help contact tracing, noting that it would be optional for individuals to include their vaccination status.
The National Cabinet approved the next meeting on Friday, 27 August 2021.
Afghanistan – evacuees
The National Cabinet noted the ongoing efforts to evacuate Australian citizens, permanent residents and their families, and humanitarian visa holders, including locally associated Afghan staff, from Afghanistan due to the rapidly changing situation.
The situation on the ground in Afghanistan requires urgent action and ensuring the safe and orderly departure of Australians and humanitarian visa holders has been a top priority.
The Prime Minister noted that the judicial authorities are working very closely to support the evacuation efforts and thanked them for providing 935 places of quarantine, above the maximum limits, for travelers returning from Afghanistan.
The Commonwealth will provide resettlement services to humanitarian visa holders in every Australian jurisdiction, which will include specialized physical and mental health services for vulnerable travelers who need additional support.
National Freight Traffic Protocol and Code
The National Cabinet noted that transport ministers have agreed an updated Freight Traffic Protocol and Code that provides a simplified and more consistent approach to testing for Covid-19 in line with recent advice from the Australian. the health Main Committee for Protection.