Queensland records no new community cases of COVID-19, as search begins for new CHO

Deputy Premier Steven Miles says Queensland has recorded no new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 as the state starts its search for a new chief health officer.The man slated to replace Jeannette Young will no longer be starting the job on Monday.Queensland COVID-19 snapshotIn the past 24 hours:Locally acquired cases: 0Other sources: 0Tests: 8,799Queensland’s vaccine rollout (percentage of those aged 16+):First dose: 76.55 per centSecond dose: 62.39 per centLatest case information from Queensland Health.Authorities announced yesterday Krispin Hajkowicz, who got the position in October after it was revealed Dr Young would become the state’s governor, would no longer take up the job due to personal reasons.One of the state’s three Deputy Chief Health Officers, Peter Aitken, will act in the job until a permanent replacement is found.Mr Miles said Dr Aitken is well qualified to stand in and Dr Young would not be called in.He said Dr Young is “very ready” to take on her new role, which has been approved by the Queen.”I think everyone agrees that Dr Young has done her service for Queensland as Chief Health Officer and is very ready to take on the new role as governor,” he said.”It’s sad that Dr Hajkowicz can’t take up the role. It was unexpected, he’s asked that we respect his privacy, that it was a decision he made for personal reasons.LIVE UPDATES: Read our blog for the latest news on the COVID-19 pandemic”He is a very, very good doctor and I certainly hope he continues to work with us in Queensland Health.Deputy chief health officer Lynne McKinley said she was “surprised” at Dr Hajkowicz not taking up the role but had a “lot of confidence” in Dr Aitken.A selection panel, spearheaded by the Health Department’s Director General, will consider whether to use the pool of candidates from the last hiring process or whether to start a new search.”There are rules in the public service about how these appointments have to be undertaken and so that involves a competitive, merit based, process and that’s what the director general will now do,” Mr Miles said. Krispin Hajkowicz’s shock decision was announced in a media release yesterday.(ABC News: Dea Clark)”I’m very confident that with Dr Peter Aitken acting in the role and the Director General is moving quickly to find a new recruit for the ongoing role, we’re not going to miss a beat.”When will border barrier be removed?Mr Miles said the physical border barriers to other states would be removed once 90 per cent of Queenslanders were vaccinated.He said it was difficult to name a date, but the government was looking for ways to make life easier for people. Deputy chief health officer Lynne McKinlay will help with the transition process.(ABC News: Kimberley Bernard )”I understand police have confirmed that the barricades will be removed when we hit the 90 per cent vaccination [rate],” he said.”It’s very hard to predict the 90 per cent threshold. Some jurisdictions see a tapering off [of vaccinations] at 80 per cent … you can’t just use a straight current daily rate.”We’ve always sought to minimise the impact on people, while also keeping people safe.”This is a cautious and measured plan but it is one that gets us open in time for Christmas.”Long-weekend vaccine pushMr Miles said there were 8,700 tests carried out, with 17 active cases across the state.Queensland Health administered 14,219 vaccines in the last day, with 76.55 per cent of Queenslanders over the age of 16 having had their first dose and 62.39 per cent their second dose.Pop-up clinics will operate today and over the weekend and 20 surf lifesaving clubs, stretching from Cairns to Coolangatta, will also host clinics.Mr Miles said the “number one” message from the government was for Queenslanders to get vaccinated.”We have pop up clinics all over the place including at surf clubs and our theme parks like right here at Seaworld so you can come along,” he said.Space to play or pause, M to mute, left and right arrows to seek, up and down arrows for volume.WatchDuration: 29 minutes 27 seconds29m Outbreak: How Australia lost control of the Delta variantWhat you need to know about coronavirus:

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