New South Wales is set to trial seven-day home quarantine for fully vaccinated international arrivals. Premier Gladys Berejiklian made the announcement in a press conference Friday morning, after revealing the state recorded 1,284 new cases overnight and 12 deaths. The trial is set to begin in the next couple of weeks.
“One of the things that we expect to occur at 80 per cent, is to consider our international borders,” she said. “That Aussies returning home through Sydney airport but also our citizens having the opportunity to go overseas when previously they weren’t able to and I’m pleased today to be joined by minister Ayres who ordinarily is a minister for major events and tourism and a whole range of other matters but today he will pleasingly be announcing a home quarantine trial that will be done in New South Wales which will start in the next couple of weeks.”
NSW Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres explained the trial will include approximately 175 people.
“They will be broken across two cohorts,” he said. “We have been working with Qantas aircrew and staff are a number of months now and will include some of those people in this trial to conduct their quarantine at home.
“They are doing shorter turnaround times with some of their existing crew in the 14-day quarantine so there are a logical cohort to do this with. We’re also going to work with police and health to select from returning Australians, do go into this home-based quarantine trial.
“This will build on the evidence collected through the South Australian trial as part of the national plan where we utilise technology, particularly facial recognition and location-based services apps on your phone to allow police and health to continue to check in on a person during their home-based quarantine.”
Qantas has since welcomed the news, with Chief Executive Officer of Qantas Airways Alan Joyce, saying in a statement, obtained by The Australian: “They are all fully vaccinated and it will make a real difference to their lives being able to quarantine in their own home and to halve the amount of time they’re isolated
“We’ve been working closely with the federal and NSW governments on how we can safely transition to home quarantine, which is an important stepping stone in re-starting international passenger services.”
South Australia is also trialing home quarantine and Tasmania is beginning a trial of home quarantine for fully vaccinated residents returning from regional NSW.