The health and safety of Tasmanians remains our number one priority as we continue to manage the COVID-19 pandemic and increase our vaccination coverage as we spring into summer.
Our vaccination program continues to proceed well, with 54.5 per cent of Tasmanians aged over 16 years now fully vaccinated and 73.1 per cent having received their first dose.
Tasmanians have responded in droves to our call to get vaccinated and I congratulate everyone for their efforts, but this is not over yet, and it is imperative we continue the momentum.
Our Spring into Summer campaign is now underway, and our aim continues to be to have 90 per cent of eligible Tasmanians over the age of 16 vaccinated by the 1st of December, and the 12-15 year old cohort shortly after that.
We have also commissioned the Garvan Medical Research Institute to do Tasmanian specific modelling to assist us in our reopening plans.
We will release both modelling and the reopening plans in mid-October.
This will allow Tasmanians to understand the pathway we are aiming for and importantly, to also understand the risks involved and how we plan to manage them.
However, to be clear, we will not open up to the high risk states – currently Victoria and NSW – until we are confident that all eligible Tasmanians over the age of 12 have had the opportunity to be vaccinated.
From today, we are also beginning the trial of a NSW home quarantine process to help get more Tasmanians home, which will run for 30 days.
There are a number of safeguards in place, and strict eligibility criteria, which can be found at: www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au/important-community-updates/high-risk-home-quarantine-trial-launches
Compliance checking will also be enhanced and COVID-19 testing requirements during quarantine will continue to apply, along with signage placed at the quarantine residence to make it clear to people delivering goods to knock and leave at the door.
For those not eligible for this trial, we are continuing to look for opportunities to enable them to return home and quarantine here, with around 100 rooms coming online at the IBIS yesterday and another 108 additional rooms at the Travel Lodge to come online next week.
With school holidays now upon us, along with grand final weekend, we urge everyone to continue to remain vigilant and keep doing the right thing.
Remember to wash your hands, cover coughs and sneezes, observe social distancing, stay home if you have cold or flu-like systems and get tested, and most importantly, keep on top of our vaccination rates.