Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has given a huge clue about the state’s reopening timeline.
Queenslanders have been given another big reason to believe the state’s borders will reopen before Christmas.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Wednesday night posted a curious tweet noting that the holiday season was just around the corner, and urged people to help lift the state’s lagging Covid vaccination rate.
“It takes five weeks from the first dose to be completely vaccinated,” she wrote.
“Five weeks from today is the 17th of November, that’s getting very close to Christmas.”
The cryptic message comes after health Minister Yvette D’Ath on Monday said it was the state’s mission to get jabbed “in the next five to six weeks” if it wanted border restrictions to ease. That takes the state through to mid-November.
Queensland has so far refused to commit to a reopening date, drawing criticism from state and federal Coalition opponents as well as business and tourism groups.
But the state government is proud of its record – especially compared to NSW and Victoria – with Queensland not recording a locally acquired case of Covid in eight days after stamping out several worrying clusters.
The state’s border travel bubble with six northern NSW local government areas was also reinstated on Wednesday.
But Ms Palaszczuk has flagged concerns over the vulnerability of children who are unable to be vaccinated, and has asked Prime Minister Scott Morrison to increase hospital funding, and announce a plan for the rollout of Covid booster shots before she can open the state back up.
The state’s patchy regional vaccination rate is also a concern, with the 80 per cent double-vaccination figure flagged at national cabinet might not being enough.
Queensland currently has 71 per cent of people aged over 16 with a first dose, ahead of only the Northern Territory, while the state’s 54.1 per cent double vaccination rate is only ahead of Western Australia. Regional Queensland areas are lagging the cities.