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Closing Queensland’s borders, nightclubs again ‘not out of the question’ – Brisbane Times

AMAQ president Dr Chris Perry said another mass closure could happen “in the next week or next month”.



Queensland nightclubs reopened little more than a week ago after several months of COVID-19 closure. Guests are allowed to order drinks at the bar, but dancing and gathering on the dance-floors are banned.
Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said police had issued three venues with $6600 fines for rule breaches and a number of people were escorted out of venues for dancing.
FILE IMAGE: Laruche nightclub in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley.
Meanwhile, the state borders reopened on Friday, to visitors from every state except Victoria due to the recent resurgence of the virus in Melbourne.
“I think its beholden to the hospitality industry to make sure they do their things right, otherwise a second lockdown is going to be terrible,” Dr Perry said.
“Almost all of the cases in Victoria are people under the age of 40 – its nightclubs, restaurants, a lack of social distancing, people hugging and kissing their 50 best friends.
“You just have to put the message out to be vigilant.”
Dr Perry said Queensland’s health department should remain ready for a second wave by not being lured into a false sense of security.
“Keep the numbers up with personal protective equipment, dont deconstruct the ventilators, be prepared for the next couple of years to put up the borders again,” he said.
Also during Monday’s inquiry hearing, former Queensland premier Campbell Newman came under fire from Public Health Association of Australia chief executive Terry Slevin.
Mr Slevin said Queensland should consider implementing a dedicated public health officer training platform, which exists in states such as NSW and Victoria.
He added that the removal of more than 4000 “so-called desk roles” from Queensland Health under Mr Newman in 2012 had stripped expertise from the sector to “deal with a response of this type”.
“And while eight years ago sounds like a long time, that public health expertise hasnt been adequately built up,” Mr Slevin said.
“I think now Queensland will pay the price for that diminishment in its expertise and capacity and it has to be recovered quickly, but unfortunately a training program isnt a quick fix.
“[But] that is certainly something Queensland should consider in terms of developing a highly trained and expert workforce in public health response.”
Queensland recorded one new case on Monday – a woman in her 30s from the Sunshine Coast who had recently returned from overseas and was already in hotel quarantine when she was tested.
“We have only one new case, but its in hotel quarantine, so we have absolutely no concerns about that issue for Queensland,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.

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