COVID-19 UPDATE

This page provides updates about the current situation in relation to COVID-19 in the different states across Australia. It is updated regularly and aims to keep you up to date as best as possible regarding the pandemic and how it may affect you and your clinic.

NEW SOUTH WALES

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY (18/02/2022)

The NSW Government is taking a staged and flexible approach to the easing of restrictions as the State continues to take a measured response to managing COVID-19.

From the beginning of Friday, 18 February 2022, the following adjustments will be made to the current settings:

  • No density limits (previously one person per 2sqm for hospitality venues);
  • QR check-ins will only be required for nightclubs, and for all music festivals with more than 1,000 people. Hospitals, aged and disability facilities may use their existing systems for recording visitors;
  • Singing and dancing will be permitted at all venues, except music festivals, where singing and dancing can recommence from 25 February;
  • The recommendation to work from home will change and be returned to the employer’s discretion.

From the beginning of Friday, 25 February 2022, the following adjustments will be made to the settings:

  • Masks will only be mandated on public transport, planes, and indoors at airports, hospitals, aged and disability care facilities, corrections facilities, and indoor music festivals with more than 1,000 people;
  • Masks are encouraged for indoor settings where you cannot maintain a safe distance from others and for customer-facing retail staff to protect vulnerable people who must access these premises and services;
  • Each State Government agency will review where it may be appropriate for public-facing staff to wear masks and will implement as necessary; and
  • The 20,000 person cap on music festivals will be removed, with singing and dancing permitted. Vaccination requirements will remain for indoor music festivals over 1,000 people, with attendees required to have at least two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Hotel quarantine for unvaccinated returning travellers will be reduced from 14 to 7 days from 21 February.

With hospitalisation and ICU rates easing and booster uptake now above 50% a staged return of non-urgent elective surgery across all NSW public hospitals has commenced and will be increased through February to March.

People aged 16 years and older can receive their booster dose at three months after receiving their second dose of any of the COVID-19 vaccines. You can book your COVID-19 vaccine or your booster shot, via www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/vaccination/get-vaccinated

VICTORIA

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY (25/02/2022)

Here is the latest update from the VIC government.

Staying COVIDSafe

There are things we can all do to make ourselves and others safer. As you live and work, remember these COVIDSafe principles:

  • Face masks are required indoors (except at home) for everyone aged 8 and above at all times, unless an exception applies.
    • We strongly recommend that you wear a face mask outdoors if you can’t physically distance, have any symptoms, or with people who may be vulnerable to COVID-19.
    • Carry a mask when leaving home. Read the Face masks page for information about where masks are required.
  • Get your next COVID-19 vaccine dose as soon as you are eligible. Get vaccinated to protect yourself, your loved ones and your community. If you haven’t had at least two doses of the vaccine, you’re at a much higher risk of becoming seriously ill or going to hospital. It’s strongly recommended you have three doses of the vaccine for the best protection. Book an appointment today.
  • Testing and isolation protocols have changed:
    • If you have COVID-19, or you are a contact of someone who does, read Your COVID Checklist for what to do. You must follow your checklist.
    • If you have symptoms or are a household (or household-like) contact of someone with COVID-19, you must get tested.
    • Most people should use a rapid antigen test as their first option to get tested. If you test positive on a rapid antigen test, you must report your result and isolate, because you are a case.
  • You can reduce risks by maintaining 1.5 metre distance from others where possible, using hand sanitiser and practising good hygiene.
  • Ventilation and air filtration helps. Consider opening windows to let the fresh air blow through or catching up with friends outside.
  • Remember to check-in where required using the Service Victoria app.

Download the full COVIDSafe settings here.

Seeing others

There are no limits to the number of people you can gather with in your home or in public places (e.g. a park or a beach). We recommend social gatherings outdoors to reduce risks.

We strongly recommend that everyone who you are gathering with at your home or in a public place has had at least two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. For the best protection, get your third dose today.

Work

Victorians are encouraged to work from home if possible.

Workplaces are open, but you must have had at least two doses of the vaccine if:

  • you are working somewhere that’s only open for twice dosed people (e.g. a restaurant)
  • if you are a worker or volunteer who is required to be vaccinated if working outside home.

High-risk settings

There are limits and restrictions on attending high-risk settings, such as hospitals, even if you’ve had at least two doses of the vaccine.

See Visiting hospitals and Visiting care facilities below for more information.

COVID-19 advice and case notification

QUEENSLAND

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/21

Face Masks update

Indoor workplaces

You must wear a mask at indoor workplaces such as offices unless it is unsafe to wear it or you are sitting at a workplace or standing at a workstation and can maintain physical distance from others. If you work alone in an office you do not need to wear a mask.

If you move around the workplace or if you have frequent contact with people (such as at a reception or sales desk), you must wear a face mask.

Public transport

Masks must be worn on public transport, including platforms and ferry terminals.

Private vehicles

You are not required to wear a mask in your car if you are driving alone or with members from your household.

Masks must be worn by the driver and passenger/s if anyone is not a member of the same household.

Taxis and rideshares

Masks must be worn in taxis and rideshares, including ranks and designated pick-up areas.

Masks must be worn at all times by both driver and passenger, unless the driver is alone in the vehicle.

Vulnerable settings

Masks must be worn at all times by healthcare workers and visitors in hospitals, healthcare settings, residential aged care facilities, disability accommodations, and prison.

Hospitality venues

Masks must be worn at all times in hospitality venues except when seated. This includes pubs, clubs, restaurants, cafes, food courts and other venues where a person buys and consumes food, drinks and ready to eat meals.

Indoor retail

Masks must be worn at all times in shopping centres, supermarkets, retail outlets and shops. There are exceptions for photo sessions.

For full information about face masks, click here.

Upcoming easing of restrictions in Queensland

From 6pm AEST Friday 4 March 2022:

  • Masks will no longer be required indoors, except in healthcare settings, residential aged care, disability accommodation, prisons, public transport, airports and on planes.
  • Masks will no longer be required in schools, including for staff, students and visitors.
  • Masks will still be recommended whenever you can’t social distance.
  • There will be no limit on the number of visitors you can have in your home at one time.
  • Venues and events will no longer have density limits.

Until then, current face mask requirements and other public health and social measures (see below) remain in effect.

What’s changed since 7 February 2022

Overview

When border restrictions were eased, COVID-19 began to circulate in our community. To ensure we don’t overwhelm our hospital system when we have outbreaks, some restrictions on unvaccinated people are necessary.

Eased restrictions for businesses

From 7 February 2022, use of the Check In Qld app is no longer required, other than for businesses where vaccination is a condition of entry.

You must continue to use the Check In Qld app for entry to:

  • hospitality venues including cafés, restaurants, pubs, clubs, RSL clubs, taverns, function centres, bars, wineries, distilleries and microbreweries, but not including food courts
  • entertainment venues including nightclubs, indoor live music venues, karaoke bars, concertstheatres, cinema, bowling alleys, amusement arcades, casinos and gaming venues, convention and entertainment centres, adult entertainment venues and brothels, theme parks, and tourism experiences, zoos aquariums and wildlife centres, and showgrounds
  • stadiums (indoor and outdoor), for all major sporting matches and other events with capacity for 5000 or more visitors. The Check In Qld app is not required for sporting stadiums with a capacity of less than 5000
  • festivals
  • Government owned galleries, museums and libraries
  • wedding ceremonies and receptions, when more than 20 people attend, including the wedding party and officials
  • private hire of a venue, where more than 20 people attend, or there is more than 1 person per 4 square metres
  • vulnerable settings (hospitals , residential aged care and disability accommodation services).

There are no capacity restrictions on these businesses.

Collection of contact information by business operators

Operators of businesses where vaccination is required as a condition of entry, must continue to collect contact information, proof of vaccination or evidence of medical contraindication from all staff, guests and patrons when entering the establishment by using the Check In Qld app.

If a business operator cannot use the Check In Qld app, they must use alternative measures to record the contact information details.

Obligation of staff

For businesses where vaccination is required as a condition of entry, any member of staff must give their contact information, proof of COVID-19 vaccination or evidence of medical contraindication by using the Check In Qld app or another measure of record keeping before entering their place of work.

A staff member is not required to give their contact information, proof of vaccination or evidence of medical contraindication if they are:

  • under the age of 16 years
  • entering to provide emergency services
  • exercising law enforcement
  • at risk of safety.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/2022

South Australia is currently under Level 1 restrictions with additional restrictions.

Level 1 restrictions

  • 1/2 density for indoor seated hospitality activities
  • 3/4 density for outdoor seated hospitality activities with standing consumption
  • 3/4 density for seated activities (not hospitality)
  • 1/2 density for non-seated activities (not hospitality)
  • No communal consumption facilities
  • 1/4 density (indoor fitness facilities) If fitness classes being held outdoors (1/2 density) LGA’s cannot charge a fee to fitness instructors for the use of public parks (unless a current contract is in existence).
  • Seated food and beverage consumption for indoor defined public activities
  • COVID Management Plans required for events of more than 1,000 people
  • Shisha ban
  • Gathering at home cap: 50 (gatherings at residential premises, including residents of residential premises)
  • Masks for high risk settings
  • Masks for personal care services (except for the person receiving the service, if necessary for the provision of the personal care service)

Additional restrictions

  • Masks for health care services (except for the person receiving the service, if necessary for the provision of the health care service)
  • Masks for passenger transport services
  • Masks for indoor fitness facilities (except while exercising)
  • Masks for shared indoor public places (except bridal parties during ceremonies)
  • Restrictions on dancing and singing.

Note: An approved contact tracing system (QR code) is generated from a COVID Safe Plan.

COVID-SAfe Check in

Businesses that conduct a defined public activity, must use the COVID-Safe Check-in or other approved contact tracing system.

Private activity

Private activity no longer permitted.  If held in a relevant venue, than venue rules apply for hospitality.

Private function

Private function no longer permitted.  If held in a relevant venue, than venue rules apply for hospitality.

Masks

Masks (covering the mouth and nose) are required in:

  • High risk settings
  • Personal care services (except for the person receiving the service, if necessary for the provision of the health care service)
  • Health care services (except for the person receiving the service, if necessary for the provision of the health care service)
  • Passenger transport services
  • Indoor fitness facilities (except while exercising)
  • Shared indoor public places (except bridal parties during ceremonies)

A requirement that a person wear a face mask does not apply to a person:

  • if they have a relevant medical condition, including problems with their breathing, a serious condition of the face, a disability or a mental health condition (Evidence of a relevant medical condition must be produced on request)
  • in circumstances where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication, such as to enable communication by or with any patron who is deaf or hard of hearing
  • in circumstances where removal of the mask is lawfully required for identification purposes
  • when the person is eating or drinking
  • if the person is a child under 12 years of age
  • if the person is carrying out functions as an authorised worker and it is not possible to properly carry out those functions with a mask on.

High risk setting

High risk means each of the following:

  • a residential aged care facility
  • a disability care facility
  • a prison, correctional facility, training centre or other place of custody
  • a public or private hospital
  • health care services provided in any of the Aboriginal communities listed in Schedule 1 or any other Aboriginal community controlled health service.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/2022

Level 1 public health and social measures to apply to the Kimberley from 6:00am, Saturday 26 February, and to apply state-wide from 6:00am, Monday 28 February.

Based on the latest health advice, Level 1 public health and social measures will apply to:

  • Kimberley region from 6:00am tomorrow, Saturday 26 February
  • Gascoyne, Mid West and Goldfields-Esperance regions from 6:00am, Monday 28 February.

Level 1 public health measures were first introduced for Perth, Peel, South West, Wheatbelt, Great Southern and Pilbara regions on Monday 21 February to help manage the surge of Omicron, and will be expanded state-wide due to further community spread of COVID-19.

In addition to the existing indoor mask requirements, proof of vaccination, contact registration and restrictions to remote Aboriginal communities, Level 1 measures also include:

Gathering limits

  • Indoor gatherings at a private residence limited to a total of 30 people (including household members)
  • Outdoor gatherings at a private residence can have up to 200 people provided there is at least 2sqm of space per person (and no more than 30 people, including household members, indoors at any given time)
  • Private outdoor gatherings limited to a total of 200 patrons for gatherings not held at a private residence

Capacity limits

2sqm rule for:

  • Outdoor gatherings at a private residence
  • Hospitality venues
  • Fitness venues (including gyms, pilates, yoga and dance studios)
  • Entertainment venues
  • Museums and galleries
  • Places of worship
  • Hairdressers and beauty services
  • Perth Crown Complex and seated service only on casino gaming floor
  • Nightclubs (up to 500 maximum capacity)

75 per cent capacity for seated entertainment venues that face forward, like theatres and cinemas.

75 per cent capacity for major stadiums, such as Optus Stadium, RAC Arena, HBF Stadium (main area) and HBF Park.

Hospitals, aged and disability care facilities

  • Visitation at residential aged care facilities, residential disability care facilities and hospitals limited to 4 visitors per patient/resident per day
  • Exemptions apply for compassionate reasons

COVID Events and Safety Plans

  • COVID Event Checklists required for events with more than 500 patrons and less than 1,000 patrons and COVID Event Plans required for large events with 1,000 patrons and above. See the Events page for more information.
  • COVID Safety Plans to be expanded to early childhood education and childcare services, hairdressers and barbers, and encouraged for all workplaces
  • Workplaces to implement COVID-19 safe settings to manage workforce impacts.

Further public health and social measures (Level 2) may be introduced in the future to help reduce increasing transmission of COVID-19 and hospitalisations, if necessary.

TASMANIA

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/22

Face masks

There are situations when wearing a mask is mandatory in Tasmania, including in indoor spaces, when travelling on planes and the Spirit of Tasmania, and in health and aged care settings.

Please explore the below information to understand more about where you must wear a mask and where mask wearing is recommended.

Masks and other COVID-safe behaviours (physical distancing, hand hygiene, cough and sneeze etiquette) are important in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Masks are especially important where physical distancing is difficult, where there are crowds or where your work requires you to be in close contact with a person.

If a person is unknowingly infected with COVID-19, wearing a mask reduces the chance of them passing the virus on to others. Wearing a mask also reduces your risk of contracting COVID-19 if you were to be in contact with a case in the community. Keep a small supply of masks at home for yourself and other household members. You should also keep a mask with you or easily accessible to you at all times, as there are many places where a mask is required or could be required to be worn at short notice.

Check in TAS app

The app enables you to check-in to businesses, organisations and events and have your data stored securely with the Tasmanian Department of Health

Vaccination requirements

The Tasmanian Government has adopted recommendations from the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) for certain workers to be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Public Health Direction, Vaccination requirements for certain workers, requires that a person covered under the Direction is sufficiently vaccinated against COVID-19.

Read about how to book a COVID-19 Vaccination and prove your vaccination status, including using the Check in TAS app.

COVID-19 Safe Events and Activities

Tasmania is synonymous with unique and vibrant events and it is important that as we respond to changing COVID-19 circumstances, that we can continue to enjoy events in a COVID safe way.

We are all learning how to live with COVID-19 for the foreseeable future. This means that while we have been able to return to doing some things as normal there are behaviours and some restrictions that we will need to maintain over the medium to long term.

As public health measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Tasmania continue to change, the Events Framework has been updated from 1 November 2021.

We have taken on board the learnings of the past 12 months to streamline the assessment process internally, however it’s important that our plans continue to reduce the risk of possible COVID-19 transmission in the community.

It is important to remember that public gatherings and events are a high-risk activity and therefore need to be carefully planned.

NORTHERN TERRITORIES

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/2022

Vaccine Pass (proof of vaccination)

You will now need to show proof of vaccination when visiting certain venues.

The venues are:

  • Bars, pubs and nightclubs licensed to sell and consume liquor on premises
  • Clubs licensed to sell and consume liquor on premises
  • Casinos and licensed gaming venues
  • Restaurants with a liquor licence
  • Cinema, theatre, concert, music or dance hall.

The requirement does not impact: take away food or beverages; food court, food truck, market stall or casual dining café that operates without a liquor licence.

If you are not fully vaccinated you cannot visit above venues.

Read more about proof of vaccinations and what is required.

The Territory Check In and proof of vaccination

You are required to check-in with the Territory Check In app (the app) at all places – businesses, organisations, community groups, venues, services and activities. Details of your check in are stored securely by NT Health for 28 days for contact tracing.

The app provides a contactless, secure and easy way for customers and visitors to sign in and provide their contact information.

You can also check in friends and family, who might not have their own device.

If you are unable to use The Territory Check In App, you will be required to manually check-in.

Notification of exposure sites

Persons who check-in at a venue using the Territory Check In app, will be sent a notification if they were at a location at the same time as a person who recently tested positive for COVID-19.

Notifications are issued when a new exposure site becomes known and is relevant to the locations in the recipient’s history in The Territory Check In app.  Only one notification is sent to an individual each day, even if they have visited multiple exposure sites in one day.

If you receive a notification, monitor for symptoms. If you develop any COVID-19 symptoms, get tested. If you test positive for COVID-19, you must declare your result online, isolate immediately and register for COVID CareNT.

Visit the Living with COVID-19 page for information on what to do if you have COVID and how to manage your illness.

A notification does not mean you are a close contact.  It provides an alert to monitor for symptoms.

A close contact is a person that:

  • resides in the same household /premises as a COVID-19 positive person
  • has spent four hours or more indoors with a COVID-19 positive person while they were infectious. A person’s infectious period is usually the two days before they developed symptoms, or two days before they tested positive if they did not have symptoms.

A positive COVID-19 person is required to notify their close contacts.

NT Health identifies any areas of concern, major outbreak venues or super-spreader events from information provided by positive COVID-19 persons and advise the community accordingly.  These can include sites where a positive case has been for more than four hours when infectious.

The Territory Check In app also allows you to store your COVID-19 digital certificate which can be used as your Vaccine Pass to enter licensed hospitality venues.

Historical exposure sites in the Northern Territory

Interstate contact tracing alerts

For information on public exposure sites visited by confirmed COVID-19 cases in each state:

Mask mandate update

There is a Territory wide indoor mask mandate. It is recommended that all people ages 12 years and over wear a mask outdoors when physical distancing is not possible.

Mandatory mask use

You must wear a mask while indoors when you cannot maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from other people.

This includes pubs, clubs, restaurants, shopping centres, hairdressers, workplaces, public transport, taxi cabs, ride share and indoor boat cruises.

Masks are not required to be worn in private residences or while exercising. Children under the age of 12 do not need to wear a mask. It is highly recommended that everyone wears a mask when outdoors, particularly at any large public outdoor events.

Face masks provide an extra layer of protection and are proven to be effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19, particularly when physical distancing can’t be applied.

Children under the age of two years should not wear a mask. It is up to individuals to decide if children over two years of age wear a face mask.

Those people who have a relevant medical or health condition should not wear a mask if it is not safe or appropriate to do so.

Personal behaviour remains our best defence against COVID-19 which is why it is important for everyone to follow all health directions.

  • Book your Covid-19 vaccine
  • Check in using The Territory Check In App every time, everywhere.
  • If you have symptoms, stay away from others and get tested for COVID-19.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water and use hand sanitiser regularly.
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow or a tissue. Put your tissue in the bin straight away.
  • Do not travel or go to work if you are sick.
  • Maintain a physical distance of 1.5m at all times.

AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

CURRENT SITUATION SUMMARY 25/02/2022

Core restrictions across all settings

  • COVID-19 Safety Plans must be prepared by certain businesses and able to be produced if requested by an authorised officer.
  • Check In CBR is still required at:
    • Licensed bars and pubs
    • Registered clubs
    • Nightclubs
    • Strip clubs and brothels
    • Organised events that are not ticketed or pre-registered, including conferences, markets, music and cultural events
    • Schools and early childhood education and care (staff and visitors).
  • From 6pm Friday 25 February, face masks are only required in certain settings.

Face coverings / masks

  • Any person aged 12 years or older must wear a face mask in certain settings.
  • A person is not required to wear a face mask if they have a physical or mental health illness or condition, or disability, which makes wearing a face mask detrimental to their condition.

Work

Return to work where it suits employees and employers
Employers should refer to the ACT Government advice on Assessing a COVID-19 Exposure in the Workplace, and the Workplace COVID-19 Exposure Assessment Tool.

Conference and convention venues (including National Convention Centre)

  • Must develop and maintain a COVID Safety Plan.
    • The plan must be produced if requested by an authorised officer.
  • Organised events of greater than 5,000 people must submit their COVID Safety Plan to ACT Health for review.
  • Exemptions are not required for large events.

Visitors to hospital facilities

A maximum of 2 people per day will be able to visit patients at hospitals and health services. This will be limited to 1 visitor at a time to ensure we can maintain physical distancing. More information is available on the visitor restrictions page.