News Queensland Queensland Premier concerned about reopening borders despite no new coronavirus cases in more than a week

Queensland Premier concerned about reopening borders despite no new coronavirus cases in more than a week

Ms Palaszczuk said she does not want infected Victorians bringing the illness to Queensland. Photo: AAP
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It has now been more than one week since Queensland has recorded a new infection of coronavirus, with just two active cases remaining in the state.

But despite the milestone, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has expressed significant concern about a Victorian COVID-19 outbreak that threatens plans to relax Queensland border restrictions.

A decision on reopening the border with New South Wales, South Australia and the Northern Territory is expected by the end of the month, with an end to the closure currently proposed for July 10.

The Victorian outbreak has seen dozens of suspected community transmission cases, including clusters, over the past week.

Ms Palaszczuk said she did not want to see infected Victorians bringing the illness to Queensland.

“We have zero cases here in Queensland,” she said.

“We don’t want to see community transmission, we don’t want a second wave.”

Ms Palaszczuk has all but ruled out a travel bubble with other states to lock out Victorian residents, though anyone entering Queensland from designated hotspots around Melbourne are still required to quarantine for 14 days.

Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young previously set a border reopening threshold for southern states to have two full incubation periods without any cases of community transmission.

By that measure, the reopening of the borders would not proceed, despite national pressure from the federal government to ease the travel ban.

But Queensland Health Minister Steven Miles said other aspects of Victoria’s response would also factor into the border decision.

Queensland’s borders would not yet reopen under a threshold previously set by Jeannette Young. Photo: AAP

“Escalating their testing, contact tracing, quarantine, isolation — they are all the tools available to them to get on top of these outbreaks,” he said.

“That’s what we will be looking for when we go to assess what ongoing border restrictions remain in place past the 10th of July.

“You’ll all recall how I used to celebrate just one day with zero cases.

“To go eight days with zero cases is cause for celebration.

“I’m sure all Queenslanders are very proud of how well they’ve done.”

At the peak of the virus in March, Queensland recorded its highest jump of 78 cases in one day, with most in the south-east corner.

The curve has now dramatically flattened, and since restrictions were significantly eased at the start of June, only eight new cases of the illness have been detected in Queensland.

None of were were locally acquired — meaning they all came from returning overseas travellers or from interstate.

Just two cases remain active in Queensland and both are on the Gold Coast.

One person remains in hospital.