Queensland declares end of border restrictions: 'Time to come down'

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Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has declared "it's time for the barricades to come down".

The premier announced Queensland border restrictions would come to an end from 1am on Saturday as the state is expected to hit 90 per cent double-vaccinated next week.

The news comes as the state reported 14,914 new Covid cases on Thursday and six people aged between 70s and 90s have died.

Chief Health Officer John Gerrard revealed two of the people who died were in their 70s, three in their 80s and one person was over the age of 90.

Those who died had significant underlying health conditions and three were in residential aged care.

Five were double-vaccinated and one had not received the jab, and none of them had been administered a booster.

Annastacia Palaszczuk addressing the media in Brisbane. The premier announced an end to Queensland border restrictions.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced Queensland border restrictions will come to an end. Source: AAP

Queensland ends border restrictions

Ms Palaszczuk said now was the right time to reopen domestic borders as the state was set to hit 90 per cent, but international restrictions remained in place until that milestone was formally declared.

She also praised police and emergency services for their work in enforcing Queensland's tough border rules.

"They have done a mighty job during the two years of pandemic. They have stopped vehicles, they have intercepted so many flights. Their job has absolutely kept Queenslanders safe, but now is the time for the barricades to come down.

"So that means anyone coming domestically across into Queensland, either by road or by air, they do not have to show that they've had their border pass, they don't have to show that they've had a RAT."

Health Minister Yvette D'Ath said Saturday's impending change "reflects the changing nature of the cases across Australia".

"It was important throughout 2021 that we controlled those people coming from hotspots and have restrictions around that. That is becoming less important by the day because this virus could be in any jurisdiction with anyone travelling, whether they're coming from a hotspot or not," she said.

"It is much more... about where they're going and that is why our restrictions around who can access certain venues and events remain.

"Because we are still wanting to make sure that only fully vaccinated people are entering those venues and those events that are more likely to see fast transmission happening."

Ms D'Ath also rebuffed reports overnight that the government was allowing unvaccinated nurses back into the workforce.

"I want to make this very clear, that is not correct. We are not planning nor are we welcoming back unvaccinated health workers back into the health system at all," she said.

Ms D'Ath said the only people being let back into hospital and health services workplaces were those who had been granted exemptions, which "there are very few", and even then they were not allowed to work in clinical settings.

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