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Byron Shire
January 23, 2022

Premier’s post-Christmas COVID update – test yourself

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If you want to look after Aunty Mabel, take a rapid antigen test (RAT) on your way to her house…

Make a RAT your first port-of-call if you are just being on the safe side.

This is the message today from Premier Dominic Perrottet and Minister for Health, Brad Hazzard, and is yet another backflip. As the health system becomes overwhelmed, the message to get a PCR test for even the mildest of symptoms has changed to one of going to a pharmacy and buying a RAT and testing yourself.

Mr Hazzard said he has heard people are lining up for PCR tests in the leas up the visits with relatives. ‘I have heard people saying “I’m getting it because I’m visiting Auntie Mabel in three or four days”. Well, if you have a test today, and then you’re visiting Auntie Mabel, in three or four days, it may well be that by then you’re positive.

Looking after Aunty Mabel

‘It’s far simpler, far quicker measure with simply to get a rapid antigen test the day you’re going to see Aunty Mabel, preferably about half an hour beforehand, go and actually get a rapid antigen test check you’re okay. And then your results are there.

‘We know that rapid antigen tests may not have the same accuracy level, but if it’s going to be three or four days before you get the result, you’d better off with the rapid antigen test.’

There was no mention of the cost of the RATs which can range from $10 to $15 each.

6,394 new cases

NSW recorded 6,394 new cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night, December 25. In some cases, it is taking up to fours day for people to be sent their results.

Fifteen COVID-19 cases have been excluded following further investigation, bringing the total number of cases in NSW since the beginning of the pandemic to 130,512.

The Premier also echoed the Health Minister’s fear about your aunt. ‘I’ve had numerous discussions with the three ministers, Minister Hazzard, Minister Ayers and Minister Tudehope, today in relation to the procurement of those rapid antigen tests.

‘We’ll have more to announce soon as they work through the logistics of doing that – I don’t want to put a date on it yet.

‘I want to get those rapid antigen tests available to people as quickly as possible. It will not be exclusive, you can still get those rapid antigen tests at your pharmacy. But we want to play a role in encouraging people to get those tests taken at home.

Mr Perrottet said this is the role the state can play. ‘As we move through to learning to live alongside the virus that these tests should not be used when we do provide them every single day. They should be used up by people, just like many are today as the health minister said – if you’re visiting Auntie Mabel, before you do, so, please take a rapid antigen test. That will alleviate pressure on our PCR testing.’



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  1. I was disgusted with the condescending, patronising, sexist “Aunty Mabel” stuff today. And this “explaining it to the imbeciles” routine from two drop kicks who’ve only ever managed to demonstrate how little idea either of them has had about management of this pandemic.


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