'Weeks to go': Albanese's daunting Covid reveal as key rule to stay

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says Australia's latest Covid surge will peak in August, revealing the isolation period for positive cases would not change.

The latest wave of infection during the winter months has several weeks to go until cases begin to fall, Mr Albanese said, while revealing isolation for cases would not be lowered from seven days to five.

"It is expected from the indications of (Chief Medical Officer) Professor (Paul) Kelly that we can expect an increase in the number of cases over the coming weeks," he told reporters on Saturday after meeting with state and territory leaders at National Cabinet.

Source: ABC
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says the latest wave of infection should peak in a matter of weeks. Source: ABC

Mr Albanese did not give a daily case prediction from Prof Kelly, saying there were "many variables" at play, and it depended on how seriously Australians took the wave.

He called on people to wear masks when social distancing was not possible and take precautions.

"This is a very infectious disease," Mr Albanese said.

He said Prof Kelly had likened the infectiousness of the virus at the moment as like measles – a "sobering" comparison for many.

"We will get through this," he reassured Australians.

Covid cases have risen as the BA4 and BA5 Omicron subvariants circulate in Australia. On Saturday morning, NSW announced 11,082 daily cases while Victoria reported 9,982.

$750 payment to return in U-turn

Mr Albanese announced his government would reverse the decision to end paid Covid-19 pandemic leave, bringing the $750 payments back until September 30.

The cost will be equally shared between the federal government and state and territory governments.

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