Premier Steven Marshall, Health Minister Stephen Wade, Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier and Police Commissioner Grant Stevens addressed the South Australian public today on what marks the state’s first day out of lockdown, with a new, heavier round of restrictions in place for the next seven days.
The Premier announced there were no new cases in the state over night, with the cluster at Modbury still sitting at 19 cases.
The largest change as noted by Marshall was that we are now all wearing face masks, in what he described as a new normal for the state for the foreseeable future given the high risk period of a Delta strain outbreak.
There have been no changes to the restrictions in place, with the transmission committee meting again tomorrow to reassess the situation.
The lift of the lockdown in SA does not extend to those who are currently in quarantine, and they must continue to follow their directed advice from health authorities.
A large number of new restrictions came into effect just after midnight this morning as lockdown came to an end, including the widespread use of masks in offices and secondary schools:
- Density requirement of 1 person per 4 square metres for all businesses & church services
- Food and beverage consumption seated only (outdoor and indoor)
- Shisha, dancing, singing restrictions to continue
- Masks in high risk settings, personal care services, indoor public places, passenger transport services, healthcare services, theatres
- Masks are strongly encouraged everywhere else, including workplace common areas
- Household and private gatherings maximum 10 people including members of household
- Weddings and funerals maximum 50 people
- Gyms may reopen with density of 1 person per 8 square metres in first instance
Testing yesterday increased to 16,057, with a figure higher than it was on Monday, with Marshall thanking all testing staff for their tremendous efforts getting them done and returned efficiently.
Nicola Spurrier spoke on the SMS situation from SA Health, confirming that you will be contacted directly if you have been associated with any exposure sites currently on watch. The updated list can be viewed here.
There has been a scam SMS sent around in recent days, and Spurrier noted that if you receive a text from SA Health it will never have a phone number attached to it, and it will never ask you to contact them, it will only direct you to the SA Health website if it is legitimate.
VIC also emerged from their lockdown last night, but the Premier was firm that border restrictions would not be eased with the state for the foreseeable future, as SA is still within the 14 day incubation period since its first community transmission.
Cases for exemptions for travel back into SA are being looked at on case by case basis, as Marshall understands some of the reasons are heartbreaking such as end of life arrangements for a loved one.
The press conference comes as a new license extension was agreed for hospitality venues who have really felt the hit of lockdown and the new restrictions.
Spurrier has noted that they have prioritised high risk groups to start with for vaccinations, and she will be really pleased when we can get a 16-30 age group vaccinated.
Young people with chronic health condition and young people in regional areas can get vaccinated with Pfizer from 16 years and up.
COVID RELIEF PAYMENTS
3,100 businesses and sole traders have received COVID relief payments as of 7:00am this morning in South Australia.
There has been a program since day one for people who have been put into directed quarantine, and in this instance, the state government gives out a $1500 payment to help support those who simply can’t go to work.
COVID-19 TESTING SITE UPDATES
The Victoria Park / Pakapakanthi COVID-19 drive-through testing site has now reopened.
The Aldinga GP Plus Health Care Centre COVID-19 drive-through testing site is currently closed.
The Mile End Netball Stadium COVID-19 walk-in testing site is currently open 24/7.
Follow SA Health’s post on Facebook (link here) for the latest updates on testing sites impacted by the weather. To find an alternative COVID-19 testing site near you, please visit: sahealth.sa.gov.au/COVIDtesting
ALL SOUTH AUSTRALIANS WHO HAVE SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 SHOULD GET TESTED ON THE DAY SYMPTOMS APPEAR.
– Fever or chills (in the absence of an alternative illness that explains these symptoms)
– An acute respiratory infection e.g. cough, sore throat, runny nose, or shortness of breath
– Loss of smell or alteration in the sense of taste
– Diarrhoea and vomiting
For more information: SA COVID-19 Information Line 1800 253 787; sahealth.sa.gov.au/COVID2019.