SA Greens want free RATs to stay

·1-min read

The Greens have urged the South Australian government to provide COVID-19 rapid antigen tests to concession card holders following a federal government move to end the free supply.

Greens MP Robert Simms said the Commonwealth's decision to stop providing free tests at the end of the month was coming at a time when virus cases were surging.

"It's not acceptable for the state government to wash their hands of this," Mr Simms said.

"As the cost of living continues to surge and SA faces another COVID wave, we don't want vulnerable South Australians to be in a situation where they can't afford to purchase a RAT and miss out on being tested."

Mr Simms said the state government should urge the federal government to reconsider its position and if not, SA should make free tests available during winter.

Meanwhile, the state government on Wednesday opened another vaccination clinic to cater for the demand of people wanting to get their fourth dose.

The walk-in clinic, in the Adelaide parklands, will operate seven days a week for the rest of July.

On Monday, more than 6600 South Australians received their fourth jab, with more than 5000 of those aged between 30 and 64 following the change to the eligibility criteria.

"From experience during the pandemic we know there will be an initial surge in demand for the winter dose and our clinics will be set up to manage that increase," Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier said.

"The new Omicron sub-variants BA.4 and BA.5 are showing a breakthrough in our previous immunity, highlighting the importance of this timely fourth dose."

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