Given a lack of spike in daily cases since public health measures were eased a couple of weeks ago, Premier Mark McGowan has announced a further easing of those measures effective 12.01 tomorrow morning.
Mr McGowan held a press conference earlier today to deliver the good news, citing falling and now stable hospitalisation numbers as good sign WA was on the right path.
“Cumulative cases since the start of our outbreak are now tracking below what was predicted, and hospital and ICU admissions are significantly below what was expected,” he said. “Vaccines have slowed the spread, taken the burden off our hospitals, and saved lives.”
It means the 500 capacity limit for hospitality and function centres will be removed, along with limits on home and private gatherings, and contact registrations will be scrapped unless you’re visiting a hospital.
While there’s still no date on when/if masks mandates will be scrapped, the following measures will ease at 12.01, Thursday 14 April:
– Refined close contact definition to align with National Cabinet’s definition*;
– Limits to home and private outdoor gatherings will be removed;
– Contact registration will only be required for people visiting a hospital;
– 500 capacity limit for all hospitality venues and function centres to be removed; and
– RAT testing on arrival no longer required for international and domestic travellers, with all arrivals at Perth Airport encouraged to take a free test on offer.
*A close contact will now only be defined as a household-type contact or intimate partner of a COVID-19 case, that being a person who resides with or stays overnight in the same premises or has had more than four hours of cumulative contact with a COVID-19 case in a residential setting (residential care facility, congregate living facility, boarding school/house or maritime vessel), without wearing a mask, or someone directed by WA Health that they are a close contact.
“Thanks to the hard work of the public and our frontline staff, Western Australia has seen lower than predicted hospitalisations and ICU admissions, which is an incredible achievement,” said Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson.
“We are now in a position to further ease some of our health measures as predicted, including moving to a new close contact definition, which is welcome news.”
Ms Sanderson added that mask wearing should continue for the time being, “and we thank all Western Australians for their continued co-operation with this.”
For more information, visit the WA Government Website.