Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Health spokesperson
Today’s 1859 number of Covid cases is shockingly high. The big jump in numbers was entirely predictable – and avoidable.
In the last 48 hours, new Covid cases have doubled, which is what happens when politics trumps public health.
Tasmania’s soaring Covid case numbers are the fallout of the Gutwein Government’s decision last Friday to remove universal mask wearing protections in most indoor settings - leaving only a few basic minimum protections in place.
Public Health Director Dr Veitch tried to temper the Premier’s decision by ‘strongly recommending’ people continue to wear masks, however Tasmanians have largely ignored this critical Covid advice.
Premier Gutwein must release the government’s plan to tackle rapidly rising Covid numbers – and that must include masking up again.
The Premier and Director of Public Health have both said they stand ready to reintroduce mask wearing protections if case numbers require it. Given Covid cases have jumped by almost 1000 in two days – now is the time to act, before BA-2 infects more Tasmanians.
Peter Gutwein and his government need to rein in Covid. The first thing the Premier should do is reinstate mandatory mask protections indoors as a priority to avoid further mass infection, and outline his plan to keep school children safe.