Australia must eventually face reality: live with Covid or become a hermit nation | Peter Collignon
Once at least 70% of adults are vaccinated, we need to gradually open our borders and adopt a different attitude to what risks we are willing to accept
and Vietnam, are seeing increasing numbers of cases.We remain fortunate that in most of Australia we have not seen much community spread. By global standards, we still have only had a small proportion of our population infected.But Australia’s success in controlling the spread also means there is only a small proportion of our population with immunity to Covid-19 because of infection. This is in stark contrast to many other countries where infection rates have likely involved more than 20% of the population.
Read moreVaccination is critical for protection. Once we have a large proportion of the adult population vaccinated, we will need to adopt a different attitude to what risks we are willing to accept if we want to re-engage with the rest of the world. Any changes will be gradual and will need a risk-based approach to keep transmission of Covid in Australia as low as is reasonable, compared with the social and economic cost of those restrictions.
We have been very effective in Australia at controlling Covid-19 and its spread. But this has left us in somewhat of a “Covid-19 limbo” compared with countries that had uncontrolled spread but now have high rates of vaccination. These countries seem to have the view that they will not eliminate Covid-19 and accept some spread within their communities. headtopics.com
I suspect that after we vaccinate a large proportion of our adult population, we will come to the same viewpoint. Otherwise we will need to become a hermit nation with very limited numbers travelling to and from Australia for the next four or five years – or even longer.
The reality is that we are eventually going to have to accept Covid-19 circulating in our community.A major hurdle currently to opening borders is many seem to expect that near-zero transmission of Covid-19 within Australia will be continued indefinitely. This is not likely to be feasible if we want to interact with the rest of the world.
We will only be able to reconnect with the global community if we are willing to accept that Covid will become endemic and so spread, like many other respiratory viruses, especially in winter. Unfortunately, even with high levels of vaccination, Covid-19 will cause some serious infections and deaths.
But we need to remember also that this is what happens each year in winter, with influenza and many other common viruses.I think we will likely gradually open our international borders, starting from later this year.Travel between countries with minimal or no Covid-19 transmission such as New Zealand will continue and then potentially extend to Singapore and the Pacific region. What we designate as low-transmission countries will be dependent on good surveillance in those countries for Covid-19, plus our ability to independently check all arrivals for their Covid status by testing and ancillary evidence from testing sewage from planes arriving in Australia after long-haul flights. headtopics.com
Quarantine of some description will likely be with us for some time. People returning from high-prevalence countries, especially if they are not vaccinated, will need to continue to spend two weeks in supervised quarantine facilities.However, people coming from low-prevalence countries and who are vaccinated should be able to quarantine at home for a period (maybe only a few days) while awaiting a negative PCR Covid-19 result. Those vaccinated but coming from countries with low to moderate transmission of Covid may need to be at home in quarantine for a longer period of time – some possibly still needing 14 days.Read more: The Guardian »
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Is this article worth reading? The headline is promising. The author is not. Well UK and usa have been shining examples of how to do things totally wrong and end up with hundred of thousands of unnecessary deaths caused by incompetence, lack of compassion and an unseemly need to placate business. Oz has had under 1000 deaths and our economy is thriving
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