Scott Morrison’s plan to end Australia’s covid lockdowns

After today’s national cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has revealed Australia’s path out of lockdowns and closures.

After today’s national cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has revealed Australia’s path out of lockdowns and closures.

“The good news I have for Australians subject to restrictions today is we have agreed with a new deal for Australians on the pathway out of Covid-19,” Mr. Morrison said.

“A pathway from a pre-vaccination period which is focused on the suppression of the virus, on community transmission cases, to one that sees us manage Covid-19 as an infectious disease like any other in our community.” Mr. Morrison said state and territory leaders had agreed to a four-phase plan tied to vaccination thresholds for over-16s:

  • Reaching a certain vaccination threshold after offering all Australians the chance to get the vaccine
  • The post-vaccination phase, where the focus shifts from suppressing the virus to minimizing severe illness and death
  • Consolidation phase where health authorities manage Covid-19 is similar to other infectious diseases like the flu
  • Complete return to normal with no lockdowns or border closures and quarantine only for unvaccinated travelers
“The first phase is the one we are in – vaccinate, prepare, and pilot,” he said.

“We continue to suppress the virus. That involves implementing the national vaccination plan to offer every Australian an opportunity to be vaccinated with the necessary doses of the appropriate vaccine as soon as possible.”

The PM said Australia’s vaccination program was ramping up, with the milestone of eight million doses administered to be reached today.

Meanwhile, the federal government has agreed to state leaders’ demands for a 50 percent reduction in international arrivals “to reduce the pressure on quarantine facilities due to the increased risks of the Delta strain of the virus”.

“While the reduction of those caps will certainly, right across the system, obviously take some pressure off, as we have observed for these past 18 months, that alone does not provide any fail-safe regarding any potential breaches,” Mr. Morrison said.

“Because of the particular virulence of the Delta strain, it is believed that is a prudent action while we remain in this suppression phase of the virus. Lockdowns in the current phase are to be only used as a last resort. That was agreed today.”

Vaccination passports will be introduced for international travelers.

“We will recognize and adopt the Commonwealth’s existing digital Medicare vaccination certificate that is automatically generated for every vaccination,” Mr. Morrison said. “That is something that is already there now. By the end of the month, it will be at another level that would see it being incorporated in things like Apple Wallets and the like. We will put in place a digital vaccination authentication at the border.

The plan’s second phase will begin once an unspecified vaccination threshold is reached.

“The post-vaccination phase will be entered once we reach a threshold of vaccination to be determined by the modeling process we’re currently engaged in,” Mr. Morrison said. “This will be a scientific number. It won’t be a political number; it won’t be an arbitrary number. (It) may include specific targets on vaccination of vulnerable populations, such as those over 70, and we are at 70 percent now, I think, on vaccination of the first dose for

those over 70. That is the gate we have to get through.” After that point, “then we will move into a phase where we seek to minimize serious illness, hospitalization, and fatality as a result of Covid-19”, and lockdowns would “only occur in extreme circumstances to prevent escalating hospitalization and fatality”.

In the third “consolidation” phase, authorities will “manage Covid-19 consistent with public health management of other infectious diseases”. It is likely we may be in that position in phase two but in phase three, that basically means that the hospitalization and fatality rates that you would see from Covid-19 would be like the flu,” Mr. Morrison said. “So what it means is, Australia gets vaccinated,

Australia can live differently. Winning in the post-vaccination phase looks very different from winning in the stage we’re in how. Winning now means we suppress the virus as best we can, which means that from time to time, such as we’re experiencing in NSW, we have to go through these experiences.

Molly Aronson

I'm an award-winning blogger who enjoys all things creative but is especially passionate about lifestyle design. I blog over at I love that I get to share my passion for healthy living, fashion, fitness, and travel with readers from all over the world.

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