Queensland has recorded another day of no new coronavirus cases as the Premier and Health officials hit out over criticism of Queensland’s border closure.
The State’s total number of cases stands at 1058 with 12 of those still active.
Just four patients remain in hospital with only one of those receiving ventilation.
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Health Minister Steven Miles says it’s more welcome news and an “endorsement” of the Government’s roadmap to recovery.
“It means that our plan to ease restrictions is working, we are gradually easing restrictions without seeing a substantial increase in cases which is precisely what we want to do,” Mr Miles said.
Testing rates dropped on Wednesday with just 2889 people swabbed.
“(That’s) less that what we had hoped so the message continues to be, everyone in Queensland, if for any reason you think there is a chance you might have COVID-19, any symptoms at all, please go and get tested.”
Meantime the Premier continues to defend her stance on Queensland’s borders and has taken aim at New South Wales, insisting she “won’t be lectured to.”
New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has described Queensland’s border closure as “illogical.”
Annastacia Palaszczuk has flagged September as the likely timeline for reopening the State, despite increasing pressure to do it in July.
The Premier insists September is not set in stone and the border closure will be reviewed at the end of each month.
She says any decision on borders will come down to what’s happening in other States.
“Our restrictions have eased in Queensland ahead of New South Wales and Victoria because we don’t have those high rates of community transmission and I hope they get their community transmission under control because that means we will be able to open up sooner,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“But let me be very clear, we are reviewing this every month, nothing has changed but we’re not going to be lectured to by a state that has the highest number of cases in Australia.”
Chief Health Officer Jeanette Young has also hit back at criticism from her Federal counterparts who have questioned the need for the border closures.
Federal Deputy Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said there was “no medical reason” for borders to remain shut, but conceded it was a decision for each State and Territory.
Dr Young says there is “plenty” of health advice that supports the border closure.
“Each state will do what’s best for their state and today here in Queensland it is best for us we if continue to minimise movement across our domestic borders,” Dr Young said.
“So of course were allowing people to come into Queensland for compassionate reasons and of course to move freight, but this is not the time for tourists to travel in Queensland because one case can cause an enormous setback to our plan to open up our communities.”
With interstate travel off the agenda for now, the State Government is encouraging Queenslanders to book trips in their own state for the school holidays in late June.
Stage two of the recovery roadmap will allow regional travel up to 250kms from mid-June.
“What i want to see in June for those school holidays and that period just before the school holidays is Queenslanders really getting out there and supporting our tourism industry.
“A lot of Queenslanders used to travel overseas, well now’s their opportunity to back Queenslanders and back the businesses and the tourism operators.
“I know (Tourism) Minister Jones is working on a ‘Queenslanders backing Queenslanders’ tourism campaign to make sure that people are backing our sector here and taking those holidays and a lot of people are wanting to know, can they book a holiday in the school holidays in their local region and the answer is yes.”