COVID-19

SA Government set to lift emergency management declaration

The Government intends to lift the emergency management declaration by 30 June 2022 following the passage of amendments to the Public Health Act.

The Malinauskas Labor Government is on track to lift the emergency management declaration imposed on South Australia, introducing legislation to amend the Public Health Act.

The Government intends to lift the emergency management declaration by 30 June 2022 following the passage of amendments to the Public Health Act, enabling SA to move out of a state of emergency and return to a relative normal.

“This Government has already acted to remove COVID restrictions including most mandatory requirements for mask-wearing, and close contact quarantine measures,” Mr Malinauskas said.

“The next step will be ending the emergency management declaration.”

South Australians have been subject to the declaration for more than two years, and now it is time for it to end and for a baseline of key protections to transition to the Public Health Act.”

The legislation has been drafted in consultation with the Emergency Management Council, which includes State Co-ordinator Grant Stevens and Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier.

This follows the Malinauskas Government removing COVID restrictions, with close contacts of COVID cases no longer having to quarantine, and masks only required for high-risk settings including hospitals.

While the Government will end the declaration, there are some measures that will be carried over to protect the most vulnerable South Australians in high-risk settings who are most at risk of serious illness if they contract COVID.

Legislation will be introduced to amend the Public Health Act 2011 to ensure these measures can continue including vaccination, mask wearing, and other infection control measures in hospitals, aged and disability care, and other healthcare settings.

The amendments will also allow specific requirements to be set for COVID positive people and close contacts.

The Government will ensure this amended legislation is not as broad in power but is limited to specific settings, and compared with the emergency declaration, this legislation does not allow for the imposition of restrictions such as lockdowns, hospitality restrictions and broad mask mandates. This would require the declaration of another emergency.

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