QLD COVID-19 Update: Revised public health direction and requirements for workers in healthcare settings
What you need to know
- New Workers in a healthcare setting (COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements) Direction (No. 2) is effective from 16 December 2021
- Updated Requirements for workers in a healthcare setting includes a Q and A section.
- New Public Health and Social Measures linked to vaccination status Direction will be effective from 17 December 2021
- Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No.29) will be revoked from 17 December 2021
- Changes to requirements for close and casual contacts from 1 January 2022
Workers in a healthcare setting direction and requirements
On 16 December 2021, Queensland Health released Workers in a healthcare setting (COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements) Direction (No. 2). This new direction has addressed many of the areas of confusion for the disability sector workforce.
Also released 16 December 2021, Requirements for workers in healthcare settings aims to provide additional clarification and includes questions and answers that relate specifically to disability workers.
Public Health and Social Measures Direction
The Public Health and Social Measures Direction linked to vaccination status Direction is effective from 5am AEST, 17 December 2021.
The direction will need to be read in conjunction with other active directions. It outlines the requirements of certain businesses, activities, or undertakings in Queensland.
Disability Provider Alert
On 16 December 2021, Queensland Health published a new Disability Provider Alert. In this update you will find information regarding the approval of Pfizer for 5 to 11 year olds, the Omicron variant and booster doses, as well as important information from the NDIA and NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission.
Disability Accommodation Services
Disability Accommodation Services Direction (No. 26) was updated on 11 December. This direction includes information about restrictions on unvaccinated people (other than residents) entering and remaining in a shared disability accommodation service. The update now reflects the Public Health and Social Measures requirements for vulnerable settings including visitor restrictions.
PPE use across Queensland will move to ‘moderate’ in all LGAs.
Face masks are required across Queensland from 1am AEST Saturday 18 December in disability accommodation services, hospitals and aged care. For more information on the requirement for all persons to wear masks in public areas, continue to monitor the Queensland Health website. Queensland Health has advised NDS that details regarding this new mandatory face mask direction will be available on the Queensland Health website shortly.
Visitor restrictions for disability accommodation services
Visitor restrictions for disability accommodation services are detailed in the Disability Accommodation Services Direction (No. 26).
Proof of vaccination
Queensland Health has produced a guide for How to add your COVID-19 digital certificate via the Check In Qld app and videos demonstrating the process.
If a visitor is unable to provide contact information or proof of COVID-19 vaccination because of age, disability or language barriers in relation to the Check-In Qld App or the other method of collection, another person may provide contact information or proof of COVID-19 vaccination on the person’s behalf.
Changes to requirements for close and casual contacts from 1 January 2022
From 1 January 2022, there will be changes to what people need to do when they come into contact with a COVID-19 case. Different measures are outlined according to the type of contact (low risk, casual, vaccinated close contacts or unvaccinated close contacts).
Information includes quarantine periods, testing regimens, and more. Please see Managing the risk for COVID-19 exposures in businesses and venues [PDF] to assist with your emergency workforce and business continuity planning.
As COVID-19 cases in Queensland increase it is important to regularly check contact tracing exposure sites. You can receive updates on contact tracing locations by subscribing to Queensland Health’s mailing list.
NDS urges Queensland disability service providers to familiarise themselves with the details of all these directions and requirements and continue to work to ensure they are compliant.
NDS has been continuously engaging with Queensland Health, advising them on how to communicate with the disability sector, and advocating on your behalf. We will continue to do this and will advise of any changes when news comes to hand.