Statement of ongoing concern: Royal Commission again flags pandemic response for people with disability
The Disability Royal Commission has released a Statement of ongoing concern on the impact of and responses to the Omicron wave for people with disability.
There are ten highlighted areas of concern, including:
- De-prioritisation of people with disability
- Access to vaccinations and boosters for people with disability and workers
- Disruptions to disability services (due to staff furloughing, lack of access to testing, and other reasons)
- Lack of equipment, support and guidance for infection prevention and control
- Lack of consultation with the sector and people with disability
This statement follows a previous statement of concern made in March 2020 about the response to the Covid-19 pandemic for people with disability.
Several of the ongoing concerns also echo recommendations made in an October 2021 report on the Covid-19 vaccination rollout. At that time, the Australian Government accepted six of the seven recommendations.
This new statement calls for National Cabinet to prioritise people with disability when it considers a Winter National COVID and Influenza Preparedness report at its next meeting in March.
The Royal Commission will release an Issues Paper on multiple areas of concern. This is expected in early to mid March. NDS will seek input from members when this is released.