As infections rose and the country’s most populated state experienced a near-doubling in daily cases, Australia will immediately seek modifications to COVID-19 testing standards to lessen the demand on test locations.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison indicated Australia needed to shift gears to regulate covid-19 testing standards, redefine who qualified as close contact, and put virus-exposed workers on sabbatical.
On Thursday, he organized a private meeting of the national cabinet.
Morrison’s proposed measures on close contacts could decrease the need for most people to receive PCR testing or quarantine themselves, shorten queues at test centers and reduce 72- to 96-hour wait times for lab results.
The suggested isolation time for asymptomatic cases has been decreased in a rising number of nations, including the United States and the United Kingdom.
The suggestion for expanded testing criteria emerges as Queensland pledged to relax standards for inter-state tourists, with domestic arrivals needing merely a negative swift antigen test result instead of just the PCR test to secure access starting Jan.1.
Morrison announced that $375 million ($271 million) will be spent on acquiring millions more speedy antigen testing kits.
After holiday travelers congested Queensland’s testing centers, causing numerous disruptions in results, New South Wales slammed the state’s so-called tourism exams.