5.9k Share this
Dr Kerry Chant sent an urgent email to NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet and his cabinet pleading with them to reintroduce Covid restrictions with rising cases – but they ignored her advice.
The chief health officer (CHO) sent recommendations to lessen the spread of the highly-infectious Omicron strain on January 3, with numbers in the tens of thousands per day.
Dr Chant called for density limits, a ban on standing in pubs and clubs while drinking, banning singing and dancing, and even cancelling festivals in a leaked correspondence obtained by the Sydney Telegraph.
‘To slow the spread to allow time for booster administration and flatten the curve to reduce the impact on critical services, the following recommendations are made for Statewide implementation,’ she wrote.
Dr Kerry Chant (pictured) recommended Dominic Perrottet bring in a number of new restrictions in January – but all were ignored by the NSW premier
The NSW CHO wanted density restrictions in hospitals reduced to one person per four square metres, with people forced to be seated while consuming alcohol.
Dr Chant also wanted singing and dancing banned, and household gatherings limited to 10 people.
These rules would coincide with the mandates in place following the lifting of Sydney’s lockdown in October.
She called for large indoor events to reinstate capacity limits, including sporting events and concerts, with higher standards of Covid safety practices in place.
Dr Chant also warned the Tamworth Musical Festival could become a ‘series of super spreader events’ and hinted it should be canned.
The email, sent on January 3, calls for a number of changes including the cancellation of the Tamworth Music Festival which she said could become a ‘series of super spreader events’
‘The fesitval draws a demographic (large numbers of older people) at higher risk of severe disease from all over rural NSW,’ she wrote.
‘Many were vaccinated with AstraZeneca vaccine and due to the longer interval between doses will not have been due for a booster, with a great risk of breakthrough infection and disease.’
A spokesman for the premier said the state’s ‘number one priority’ was to keep its residents safe but said it was considering a large number of factors when it came to reintroducing restrictions.
Mr Perrottet (pictured) has been slammed by Labr for ‘ignoring’ Dr Chant’s advice
‘The NSW Government has adapted and will continue to adapt its response to the pandemic as needed depending on the circumstances we face, taking into account advice regarding impacts on a range of matters, including our health system, the mental health of the community and the economy,’ they said.
A Labor health spokesman accused Mr Perrottet of ‘ignoring’ the advice of his chief health officer.
‘The Premier’s decision to essentially ignore the health advice coming from the experts has had devastating impacts on our community both in terms of our health system and the economy,’ Ryan Park said.