December 7, 2022

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Why Australia abandons ‘Zero Govt-19’ strategy – International

The country has a cautious approach and will not rush to remove restrictions (Photo: Getty Images)

Australia has changed its Covit-19 engagement strategy: Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced it is time to drop the locks and “get out of the cave”.

With the vaccine accelerated, he says, Australians will soon “live with the virus” for the first time. In other words, they will not try to eliminate your cycle.

This is a drastic change for a country that sees a few epidemics.

What is the strategy?

The strategy adopted by the country was called “Australian Fortress” by some.

Australia wanted to maintain a “zero Govt-19” strategy by controlling the entry of foreigners, monitoring all infections and closing state borders after the outbreak.

Locks are often enacted in all cities and states – sometimes after a lawsuit.

Melbourne, for example, experienced more than 200 days of lockdown during that period.

These measures are criticized for their cost and the mental well-being of the people.

But so far, they have prevented Govt-19 cases, thousands of deaths and allowed many Australians to live freely.

So what has changed?

The delta variation changed that Australian landscape. In June, it consolidated in Sydney before spreading to Melbourne and the capital Canberra.

State governments are re-locking their capitals.

Currently, one in two Australians must be at home.

This helped to suppress the spread of cases. In Sydney, the R number – the virus transmission rate – dropped from 5 to 1.3.

But officials said the “Zero Govt” strategy could no longer be achieved.

This has raised criticism of Morrison’s administration of Australia’s low vaccine levels, with many accusing him of being complacent. Morrison said the vaccine in April was “not a race.”

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But he said vaccines were now the only way to re-open Australia following the New South Wales state government. The state of Victoria, where Melbourne is located, also dropped its strategy this week.

There are more than 100,000 people
More than 100,000 people are vaccinated every day in the state of New South Wales (Photo: Getty Images)

What is the new plan?

36% of Australians over the age of 16 are fully vaccinated – experts say that is not enough to get out of locks.

“This marmot day is over, and it will end when we start reaching 70% and 80%,” Morrison said last week.

Vaccination is being accelerated in Australia – now the UK and US are vaccinating faster than peak vaccines.

At current rates, Australia can vaccinate up to 70% of its 16+ year olds by mid-October.

The country has started vaccinating children over 12 years of age.

The idea is then to start easing the locks – that way, the vaccinated people will have more freedom.

But the country plans to continue testing and monitoring while maintaining mild restrictions such as wearing masks and social space. Small locks are also possible, but they are considered unlikely.

“The proposed plan is really very careful,” says Ivo Mல்லller, an expert on population health and immunity at the University of Melbourne.

“It’s not ‘Independence Day’, it’s not ‘throw everything out the window and go to dinner’ – it’s not proposed.”

When will international borders open?

This will happen when 80% of those vaccinated reach Australia. But the trip will only be open to countries marked as “safe” and vaccinated people.


Hospitals in the country, officials say
Officials say the country’s hospitals are ready and ready to face the crisis (Photo: EPA)

“With the 80% dual vaccine, we plan to allow our citizens to access international travel and welcome Australians home through Sydney Airport,” Periglian said this week.

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The National Plan allows “travel bubbles” to secure countries, indicating that vaccinated foreigners can also enter.

Qantas signaled the reopening of routes to the UK, US, Singapore, Canada and Japan in December.

But is everyone happy?

Polls show that 62% of Australians support the government’s plan to reopen.

But many Australians are not safe with the idea of ​​”living with the virus” once they become accustomed to a small number of infections.

The government model, developed by Doherty Institute of the University of Melbourne, estimates that re-opening with 70% of the vaccine could lead to 13 deaths in six months – provided testing and monitoring work well. But if there are fewer health measures according to the plan that number will rise to 1,500.

Just this week Australia recorded its 1000th death by Govt-19, the last G20 nation to do so.

So, psychologically, it’s a big change in mood, Mller says.

More than 90% of cases in Australia occur around Sydney and Melbourne. But it found less than six viruses in eight states and territories in Australia.

“They’re not basically spreading and controlling. People are basically living normal lives, so it’s very hard to say they have to deal with the virus,” M முller said.

Political conflict

Therefore, some parts of the country without Govt-19 do not agree strategically with the central government and other states.

Under Australia’s federal system, state governments have control over health, policing and internal borders.

Queensland and Western Australia (Western Australia) now refuse to open their states, while Sydney sees more than 1,000 epidemics a day.

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“I do not understand why people say we’re deliberately infected,” said Mark McCowan, the prime minister of Western Australia.

But Morrison argues that these states cannot always hide from the virus.

“Most Australian states need to realize that they will eventually have to move away from the zero Govt strategy because it will not last forever,” Mல்லller says.

What can Australia learn from abroad?

Experts say a lot can be learned from other countries about how to reopen and repair risk.

Could social exclusion be a necessity in schools like France and Mexico? By the way, can Australia accept the rapid diagnostic tests used in Europe and North America? What is the best vaccine passport to allow safe movement?

Experts urge Australia to focus on vaccinating at-risk groups, such as tribal communities, before reopening.

They point out that Australia’s reopening plan has been shaped by the experiences of the UK and US.

Although delta has caused epidemics in both countries, vaccinations have greatly reduced acute illness and mortality.

“This ensures that we are on the right track with vaccines,” M முller said.

Australia’s 80% vaccine reopening plan is higher than the 54% approved by the UK, where the vaccine status is now 80% of the eligible population. In Denmark, where 70% are vaccinated, almost all restrictions have been lifted.

Singapore, which reached 80% this week, is at the forefront of its reopening plans, but is taking a cautious approach, such as Australia, with restrictions such as wearing a mask only to travel to countries considered safe.

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