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Epidemiologist criticises Australia’s ‘extremely conservative’ plan for international borders

Ross and Russel
Article image for Epidemiologist criticises Australia’s ‘extremely conservative’ plan for international borders

Australia’s international borders are likely to remain closed until late 2022.

Finance Minister Simon Birmingham last week told The Australian we “won’t be seeing borders flung open at the start of next year with great ease”.

Epidemiologist and head of the School of Population and Global Health at Melbourne University, Nancy Baxter, says the federal government is being “extremely conservative” and the plan is “not what she expected.

“I do find this shocking,” she told Ross and Russel.

“It doesn’t reflect the fact that many places will have COVID very well controlled within the next year.

“We can make all sorts of arrangements or have vaccine passports, or those types of things, that will allow freer travel.”

Professor Baxter says with improvements to Australia’s quarantine arrangements, some travel could safely resume earlier.

“There’s never a 100 per cent failsafe quarantine system. any time we let anyone in there’s always some risk,” she said.

“But we can do more to mitigate the risk than we’re currently doing.

“I think it’s going to be a long time before we’re able to just hop on a plane and go wherever we want to go with absolutely no restrictions.”

Press PLAY below to hear Professor Baxter’s criticism of Australia’s border plan

Ross and Russel
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