After a staggering 8.6 million PCR tests, 12 million jabs and 1 billion registrations on the Queensland Government app, the Queensland Government is about to take the next step in its COVID journey.
Since December, Queenslanders have spent the equivalent of 132,749 days in hospital beds with the virus
In Queensland, COVID-19 has claimed 2,277 lives
As of Nov. 1, the CHO will no longer be able to close state borders, order lockdowns, or require vaccinations for the general public
New figures illustrate the impact of COVID-19 on the state just days before the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CHO) steps down.
Figures show almost 500 health directives have been issued to Queenslanders since the state of emergency was declared – powers that expire next week.
Queenslanders have spent the equivalent of 132,749 days in hospital beds with the virus since December, and Queensland Health has lost 300,000 staff days to isolation and quarantine since March.
State health hotlines answered more than 1.5 million calls.
But today, only three people are in intensive care with COVID-19 (compared to 54 when the virus peaked), and 92 people are in hospital (compared to 1,123 at the peak).
“Since meeting our vaccination targets and opening our borders, we have lost 2,277 lives,” Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said.
“I want to acknowledge the grief associated with each life lost. I know the grief is shared by our medical staff.
“Our hearts go out to all the families and friends of those who lost their lives.”
Ms D’Ath said modeling showed more than 10,000 Queenslanders would have died if there had been widespread transmission before vaccination.
“I don’t think any of us can fully appreciate the magnitude of this undertaking,” she said.
No more lockouts
This comes just days before new laws take effect that strip CHOs of the COVID powers that were granted during the pandemic.
These powers allowed the CHO to issue public health directives, including restrictions on people’s movement and physical contact.
As of Nov. 1, the CHO will no longer be able to close state borders, order lockdowns, or require vaccinations for the general public.
They will still be able to issue mask directives, issue directives to isolate and quarantine for up to seven days, and mandate vaccinations for high-risk workers.
In total, during the pandemic, the chief sanitary doctor issued 493 orders for health protection.
Ms. D’Ath said these directives and state compliance were key in defeating the virus.
“Thanks to the collective efforts of Queenslanders, we have stopped the virus from running wild,” Ms D’Ath said.
“We have been able to live with a semblance of normalcy throughout the pandemic that very few other communities have had.
“This is Queensland, you should be very proud.”