BREAKING: Qld records another massive spike in COVID cases

Queensland has recorded another large spike in COVID-19 cases, with 589 new infections detected in the past 24 hours.

It takes the total number of active cases across the sunshine state to 1389.

The cases were detected after more than 30,684 people came forward for testing in the past 24 hours.


ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT


The state’s vaccination rate currently stands at 90.25 per cent first dose and 85.65 per cent double dose.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, Health Minister Yvette D’Ath labeled Queensland’s vaccination figures as “extraordinary”.

“That is extraordinary… For an immunisation program that only started in February, and in 10 months we have over 90% of our eligible population who have had one dose,”she said.

“There is no other immunisation program in this country or the world that has been able to deliver within that sort of timeframe.”

Ms D’Ath also welcomed the news that booster shots will be brought forward from five months to four months from January.

“We have heard the announcement this morning from Greg Hunt and the Commonwealth that they are bringing forward the booster shots and the eligibility for booster shots,” Ms D’Ath said.

“That is great news, and I say to everyone who is able to get their booster, earlier than planned, based on these timeframes, that we strongly encourage you.

“Particularly going to community pharmacy or GPs, because we know as we move forward we need these boosters to become part of just a normal immunisation program and getting those vaccinations done as quickly as possible”.

Chief Health Officer John Gerrard said more people are now being treated in their homes rather in hospitals, due to the low rate of people with severe symptoms.

Out of all the cases, just three people are in ICU with mild symptoms.

“In the coming weeks we will be seeing large numbers of cases, thousands of cases,” Dr Gerrard warned.

“When you have large numbers of cases that will translate to a significant number of people with the potential to put a strain on the health system.”

More than 30,631 new border passes have been issued in the last 24-hours, taking the total number of passes that have been issued since borders reopened last week to 322,000.

“Which shows that many people are still flocking to Queensland,” Ms D’Ath said.

Queenslanders are being urged to wear a mask in situations where they cannot socially distance over the Christmas period.

“It is really important and we know it is going to be important over the next few days as large gatherings of people come together for Christmas and Boxing Day, and as we lead into the New Year,” Ms D’Ath said.

Meantime, the Chief Health Officer has strongly warned anyone with symptoms to avoid going to any Christmas celebrations.

“Obviously if you have any symptoms, if you are unwell, please don’t attend Christmas events,” Dr Gerrard said.

“And if you are not vaccinated, stay away from everybody, do not go to any Christmas events”.