Queenslanders currently in Victoria are urged to return home immediately to avoid an expensive stay in quarantine.
Starting noon Friday (3 July), people arriving in Queensland from COVID-19 hotspots, which will be all postcodes in Victoria, are required to quarantine for two weeks in a government-mandated hotel at their own expense or turn back.
Deputy Premier and Health Minister Steven Miles said Queenslanders still in Victoria, were urged to return home before noon Friday.
“We’re calling on Queenslanders still there to come home as soon as possible. It’s safer here – we’ve had one case in almost two weeks and that was acquired overseas,” Mr Miles said.
“If you come back from Greater Melbourne before lunchtime Friday, you will still have to quarantine at home for two weeks but you won’t have to pay for it. After Friday, you will have to quarantine in a hotel and pay if you come back from anywhere in Victoria.
Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said there had been more than 295 cases in Victoria in the past week alone.
“The number of COVID-19 cases in Victoria is obviously very high,” she said.
“Mandatory hotel quarantine has been successful in ensuring people coming in from overseas who had coronavirus did not spread the disease and cause local outbreaks.
“It will now apply to people coming from hotspots anywhere. All hotspots are currently located in Victoria, and from noon Friday, all LGAs within Victoria will be declared hotspots.”
Previously the government had footed the bill for people returning from overseas in mandatory hotel quarantine.
Dr Young said the government had moved to shift costs back to people in quarantine to reduce the burden on taxpayers.
“Since the quarantine direction came into place on 28 March, we have spent more than $20 million accommodating more than 8000 people in quarantine,” she said.
“The general quarantine direction has been in place for almost three months and it’s well-publicised so now is an appropriate time for people to pay their own way. A hardship scheme will be in place to help vulnerable people and people experiencing financial difficulties.”
Queensland’s COVID-19 tally remains at 1,067, with just two active cases.
From midday July 3, Queensland will move to Stage three restrictions and anyone returning from COVID-19 hotspots will be required to quarantine.
From July 10, people traveling from Tasmania, NSW, South Australia, Western Australia, Northern Territory and ACT will be able to travel to Queensland.