Wed. May 18th, 2022

Queensland’s health chief believes tests have helped the state see the Delta variant of COVID-19 as authorities encourage more people to be vaccinated.

Queensland recorded no new locally acquired cases for the third day in a row Saturday after more than 11,000 tests.

With the risk of recent Delta outbreaks declining, Health Director Jeannette Young says Queensland’s success in getting rid of the virus is related to testing.

Dr. Young believes people have “come in droves” to be tested so authorities can quickly identify index cases.

“That’s the reason … it’s made the biggest difference that people are just ready to get out and be tested, and then we’ll find them,” she told reporters on Saturday.

The 13-year-old who had a headache (in the Sunnybank cluster), I still can not believe she came forward, so we got on top of that cluster so quickly. Other people who just have no idea they might have it come up and get tested, so I think that’s probably one of the biggest differences in Queensland. ”

Jeannette Young
CHO Jeannette Young believes Queensland’s success in abolishing COVID-19 is related to testing. Credit: AAP

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said state-run vaccination centers delivered an additional 20,811 doses on Friday with the proportion of eligible Queenslanders receiving a first dose of 69.27 percent with 51.06 percent fully vaccinated.

The state government is holding another Super Pfizer Weekend so walk-ups can get the jab on Saturday and Sunday.

Although Queensland has not set a date or vaccination target for state borders to reopen, D’Ath said Friday that more people got the plug “while we talk about Christmas, while we talk about borders opening”.

She urged anyone not yet to get their first vaccine to do so before the Delta tribe takes hold in Queensland.

“The people who have sat back and gone ‘We do not have an outbreak here, I can afford to wait’: time has passed,” the health minister said.

“It’s going to take five to six weeks before people are fully protected if they get vaccinated today. We do not know what five or six weeks will look like in November.”

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