South Australia has recorded another jump in COVID-19 cases ahead of an expected peak next week, as SA Health implements a new vaccination policy for staff.
- More than 8,000 new COVID-19 cases have been reported in SA over the past week
- The number is similar to what modelling had predicted for the peak next week
- SA Health staff who work with patients have to get vaccinated for COVID-19 under a new policy
A total of 8,346 new infections were reported over the past week, up from 6,867 the week before and 3,797 in the first week of November.
Three new deaths were reported, all of people in their 80s or 90s.
New modelling released by SA Health on Tuesday predicted about 1,200 new cases per day by the peak next week, or about the same number as was recorded this week.
They are expected to fall again by Christmas.
A new vaccination policy that comes into effect for SA Health staff today requires everyone working in patient areas to get vaccinated for COVID-19.
Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier said the policy was made with input from staff and unions.
“The majority of people were supportive of this approach,” she said.
“We had a lot of feedback that the old policy was difficult to read, difficult to follow and so it’s given us an opportunity to streamline it, and really make it very clear in black and white what are the requirements for different categories of staff.”
SA Health had previously been operating under a South Australian Public Health Act direction that required healthcare workers to get vaccinated for COVID-19.
It was set to expire next Wednesday.
Private healthcare operators will have to come up with their own policies around vaccinations from that date.
Inactive AFLW player and nurse Deni Varnhagen lost her bid to challenge the mandate on Tuesday.
She lost her work as a nurse in both a private and public hospital last year after refusing to get vaccinated.