COVID live updates: Epidemiologists hope approval of Pfizer vaccine for children will reduce infection risk before new school year

Live updatesPinnedToday’s case numbersThis section will be updated throughout the day. If you don’t see your state or territory yet, don’t worry — case numbers often filter in throughout the day.Victoria:New South Wales:Queensland:South Australia:Tasmania:ACT:Western Australia:Northern Territory:15m ago15 minutes agoSun 5 Dec 2021 at 8:59pmBy Bridget JuddDavid Littleproud: State and territory leaders should hold their nerve with OmicronFederal cabinet minister David Littleproud is calling on premiers and chief ministers to allow interstate travel before Christmas. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews says he will not be pursuing an ‘omicron zero’ policy, despite rising cases across the country. New South Wales is allowing interstate travel — as is South Australia, although that state now requires more COVID-19 testing to enter.Agriculture Minister David Littleproud has told Channel Nine that leaders should hold their nerve. “It is now time to take that bold step and trust each other, take hands and move forward together,” he says.”If NSW and Victoria, the most populous states, can do that then it sends a positive message to the other states that we can come together, we can do this.”23m ago23 minutes agoSun 5 Dec 2021 at 8:51pmBy Bridget JuddThere are now 15 cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in NSWHealth authorities are expecting more results today.  Investigations into an outbreak of the variant at a Sydney indoor climbing gym and two schools are continuing. 286 coronavirus cases were recorded during the latest reporting period. 30m ago30 minutes agoSun 5 Dec 2021 at 8:43pmBy Bridget JuddWhen will the Mickleham quarantine facility be built?Hi, I have asked a few times but not had a reply. When is the construction of the Victorian quarantine facility at Mickleham going to be finished?-CuriousMorning Curious.As I’m sure you can understand, we get a lot of questions and it’s not possible to get to all of them.But as per the Victorian government’s FAQ page:When will the hub be built?This project is currently in the planning stage with construction anticipated to begin in September 2021. We anticipate that the first stage of the hub (which will provide 500 beds) will be operational in early 2022.  You can read more here.Good morning Bridge! Am I first? 😀-NattyClose but no cigar (although I do believe you were first on the F1 blog, Speedy Gonzales).36m ago36 minutes agoSun 5 Dec 2021 at 8:38pmBy Bridget Judd’They were waiting for more complete data to come in’A leading epidemiologist says parents can be reassured the latest COVID vaccine — designed for children — is safe and effective. The Therapeutic Goods Administration has given provisional approval for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for children aged between 5 and 11.The Federal Government is still waiting on final advice from the vaccine advisory group ATAGI about the rollout, but is aiming to offer vaccines from next month. Professor Catherine Bennett says local authorities have watched how it’s been rolled out in other countries.”Well the TGA wouldn’t approve it if it wasn’t safe across the age groups that we’re now looking at. They were waiting for more complete data to come in and we’ve also seen some of the rollout happening around the world.”Our authorities are actually looking at the real world data at the same time as they’re looking at the trial data, so I think that is very reassuring.”38m ago38 minutes agoSun 5 Dec 2021 at 8:35pmBy Bridget JuddGood morning, I’m Bridget Judd and I’ll be bringing you the latest COVID updates throughout the day.As always, you can send in your questions and comments by hitting the big blue button at the top of the page.Let’s get into it.

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