Premier Steven Marshall addressed the South Australian public with the latest on the COVID-19 situation in SA.
At today’s press conference, Marshall opened by announcing SA Pathology will return to normal hours as of today to assist with testing.
He then thanked South Australians for spending the New Year’s weekend safely.
221,140 tests were conducted yesterday, which is one of the highest testing days we’ve had, in extremely difficult heat conditions. Marshall then thanked those who were working on those frontlines.
There were 2298 positive cases announced today.
There has been quite a surge in hospital admissions, with 82 patients in hospital, up from 71 yesterday and 40 the day before.
7 of those in hospital are currently in ICU.
Children in the Women’s and Children Hospital has dropped from 10 to 7 positive cases overnight.
South Australia’s current vaccination rate 12+ is 87.9%.
Not all opportunities to get vaccinated were taken yesterday so the message from the Premier was to go out get vaccinated and boosted.
“Omicron is a complete and utter game-changer in Australia,” said Premier Marshall.
Marshall then urged anyone with children aged between 5-11 to get vaccinated. There are 2 doses for children, with 8 weeks between them, and it’s a more mild dose than what is given to adults.
Marshall is concerned about numbers in the children’s population, as has been seen in the ACT with large numbers of younger people testing positive, so they are working towards protecting SA’s younger population.
Steven Marshall then warned the public, saying “the people of South Australia get that Omicron is different, it is very different to Delta.” He said it is going to be a very tough couple of weeks, and we’ll see an increase in case numbers. Omicron is difficult right across the world, and there is no better place to be in the world than South Australia, with our resources. The borders will not close. He said “It was considered, but the decision was ultimately made not to close the borders.”
Marshall then said “we have risen to the challenge with previous waves and we will do the same with Omicron.”
In regards to the upcoming Tennis, Marshall confirmed that The Adelaide International will be a fully vaccinated event.
The Premier stated that South Australia is a much better position than the Eastern States, as we can learn from their Covid-19 management. “We are behind the front of the Eastern States, which puts South Australia in a better position”
“We still are weeks away from the peak of this disease,” he said.
He defended opening up borders, saying that happened before Omicron, with borders opening Pre-Christmas and the World Health Organisation not announcing Omicron until late December. “It’s very difficult to stop Omicron anyway. What we’re doing in SA is getting on the front foot.”
Marshall said that they have been “significantly flexing up capacity of our response team”.
There are 1000 more vaccination appts available today at Wayville than there were yesterday
It’s now mandatory for front line workers to be boosted.
Important things to note:
If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter how mild, please seek testing as soon as possible.
For more information on health advice and requirements for households, visit www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/COVIDcontacttracing.
Find your nearest testing site at www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/COVIDtesting