Australian states and territories are no longer going to publish daily COVID-19 case numbers, with health ministers deciding to move to weekly updates on new infections.
- The decision follows a meeting of health ministers last week
- Figures will be consistently reported across jurisdictions
- Federal Health Minister Mark Butler said it will bring states and territories in line with national reporting
The final daily case numbers will be issued on Friday September 9, and the first weekly report will be made available on Friday September 16.
The new weekly figures, which will be consistently reported across jurisdictions, will include case numbers, new and total deaths, vaccination rates, and a breakdown of ICU and ventilated patients in hospital.
The decision follows a meeting of health ministers last Friday, but was not made public until Wednesday.
Federal Health Minister Mark Butler said health officials had backed the changes.
“The move is supported by chief health officers, and will ensure high quality, accurate information is provided that sheds more light on COVID dynamics,” he said in a statement.
“This approach will bring national reporting in line with all the state and territories and support the analysis of COVID trends nationally and globally.
“The national report will be expanded to include trends-based analysis and oral antiviral treatment uptake.”
ACT Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith said cases had slowed in the territory.
“The winter wave of COVID-19 has passed and we have reached a stage in the pandemic where daily reporting is not as important as it was,” she said.
“Weekly reporting will allow the public to stay informed about the level of COVID in the ACT and the impacts it is having on our health system and society more broadly.”
Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath says it will coincide with national changes to COVID isolation requirements.
“This is being done in line with the changes that are coming in this Friday on the 9th that will see isolation for quarantine come down to five days and changes around mask wearing on domestic airlines,” she said.