Thousands of Australians in COVID-isolation for Christmas.
The Queensland government is under pressure to slash 14-days isolation for close contacts who are fully vaccinated.
A COVID-positive case on two flights from NSW to QLD originally sent two planeloads of people into isolation for two-weeks, meaning dozens would be forced to miss Christmas.
While the QLD government has back flipped on the decision after intense criticism and listed most on the flight as casual contacts instead, those in the immediate surrounding rows will still be forced to miss out on Christmas festivities.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison is urging the state to ease its strict requirements for close Covid contacts now, moving with the medical advice in southern states which have halved the period for fully vaccinated people.
"I keep having nightmares about spending Christmas alone in my apartment while my family all gathers up the coast for a big celebration." https://t.co/Ij8m4IbDLv— Mamamia (@Mamamia) December 15, 2021
"It's so important that when we deal with the Omicron variant that we keep our head... and that we apply common sense and we think these things through. And what we do must be sustainable," Scott Morrison told reporters on Wednesday.
Queensland is not planning on reducing its isolation period for close contacts to seven days, with a test on day five, until January 1.
Saturday marks seven days until Christmas, so close contact 'pings' in most other states and territories from this weekend will also force those affected into forced quarantine for December 25th.
In a change announced on Wednesday, NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet said the definition of close contacts in his state will mainly be focused on households - so if you're deemed a close contact, it would generally be a member from your household.