Queensland is about to come out of lockdown. Here's what it will take in NSW.

On Saturday morning, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced that Brisbane and Moreton Bay will be emerging from a COVID-19 lockdown at 6pm.

Eleven other regions, including the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Townsville, emerged from stay-at-home orders on Friday, but Brisbane and Moreton Bay were locked down for a further 24 hours while the state's contact tracers worked to investigate three new cases.

Speaking at Saturday's press conference, the Premier warned that while the snap lockdowns were over, the state is "not out of the woods yet".

Health authorities reported five locally acquired cases on Saturday, three of which are of particular concern: a man from Brisbane who had travelled to Eumundi, Sunshine Beach, Kenilworth and Doonan; a baggage handler at Brisbane Domestic Airport who lives in Carindale and has not been linked to any existing cases; and a woman who worked one shift at Prince Charles Hospital. The latter did not work in the COVID ward and had received her first vaccination.

"In relation to these last three issues we are very closely monitoring those," Premier Palaszczuk said.

"We are doing a lot of work but we believe that our contact tracers can get on top of those issues very carefully."

Some restrictions will remain in place for impacted areas, including mandatory mask-wearing and limits on social gatherings. 


Queensland Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young said that she is "comfortable" with the lockdown being lifted, as long as Queenslanders adhere to the regulations, maintain social distancing, check-in at venues, get tested as soon as they have symptoms and get vaccinated if eligible.

Meanwhile, over the state's southern border, millions of people in Greater Sydney are poised to enter their second week of a two-week lockdown. 

NSW is the last state left under stay-at-home orders, after the Northern Territory and Western Australia this week lifted their snap lockdowns following small numbers of COVID-19 cases.

NSW recorded 35 new cases of the virus in the 24 hours to 8pm Friday, six of which have not yet been linked to previously identified cases.

While those numbers represent the highest daily total since the cluster emerged in Sydney's eastern suburbs last month, the state's Premier Gladys Berejiklian is cautiously optimistic.


"The green shoots of the lockdown doing what we hoped it would are certainly there," she said. "We have not seen a huge surge in cases and we certainly feel through our contact tracing that we are not, at stage, missing any chains of community transmission."

Bottom line: the ratio that will end Sydney's lockdown. 

The Premier stressed that an on-time end to the lockdown in Greater Sydney (it's due to be lifted on July 9) depends on the number of cases detected among people in the community versus those insolation.

On Saturday, it was nine versus 26. That's an improvement from Friday, when it was 12 versus 19. 

But the Premier stressed that the next few days will prove critical. By early next week, we should truly start to see the effects of the stay-at-home orders.

"We always base our decisions in New South Wales on the health advice and the science and data, and there's been a shift in the last 24 hours," she said. 

"We want to see that shift continue. We want to see that trend continue. We all assumed a high number of cases, but so long as the majority of the cases are in isolation there's less concern. If we continue to see those trends, we have a greater chance of getting out of the lockdown in a timely way."

Feature image: Getty/Mamamia.

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