Scott Morrison declares we’re NEVER going back into lockdown because case numbers don’t matter and Omicron can be managed like flu
Scott Morrison has declared ‘the days of lockdown are over’ even with Australia recording record Covid case numbers.
The Prime Minister said the Omicron variant was 75 per cent less severe than the Delta strain and could be publicly managed like other infectious diseases such as flu.
Australia detected 32,216 new Covid cases on Sunday after a record 35,208 on Saturday.
But Asked if Australia would need a ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown to stop the surge, Mr Morrison told the Today Show: ‘No. Because it is not about numbers.
‘I keep making this point. This is a different type of variant which requires an evolution of our response.’
Scott Morrison has declared ‘the days of lockdown are over’ even with Australia recording record Covid case numbers
‘The days of lockdown are gone. We’re going forward. We’re not going back. That’s not how you manage this virus.
‘There will be high case numbers but the severity is a lot less so you focus on your hospital system.
‘I think you’re seeing that. We’ve got 51 people on ventilators around the country. 148 people in ICU.’
Mr Morrison said the vast majority of people who catch the Omicron strain, which was discovered in November in South Africa, have a mild illness that can be managed at home.
‘If you are in hospital at the moment, the primary reason for that is you weren’t vaccinated. The second reason is you’ve got Delta, not Omicron.
‘With Omicron, there is only a very small number of cases that are in hospital.
‘We’re now dealing with a very different virus. We’ve really got to change the way we think about it and that’s why talking about case numbers now is really not the point.’
Last week state premiers agreed to a only defined household contacts as ‘close contacts’ who must isolate for seven days in a bid to stop the nation including nurses and supermarket workers from being unable to work.
‘The issue is how we’re managing the impacts on the health system and that’s why ensuring we have sensible rules that allow people to go back to work,’ Mr Morrison said.