When The Rubber Hits The Road

Everything is relative regarding how a community responds to an outbreak of coronavirus, as Victoria struggles to manage a New Year outbreak that started with an interstate traveller from New South Wales. With 29 active cases so far, the State Government has responded quickly by closing the border with New South Wales and mandating that masks are worn indoors.

Though the outbreak is small, it is far from under control, and the anxiety is building. Testing has increased by 300%, and you can now be waiting for up to 5 hours in a queue to get tested. The population is on alert, as they are nervous about the government sending us back into lockdown, as they did in July.

Some critics have said that the State Government's reaction to closing the borders and mandating mask-wearing has been too swift and out of proportion with the outbreak's size. When the second wave hit the state in the middle of last year, they were not prepared, and we ended up with over 20,000 cases. No one, including me, wants to end up there again.

This response has been a stark contrast to New South Wales, who have not mandated mask-wearing and left their borders open to other states, even though they have a larger outbreak. Apparently, they think that their contract tracing alone will contain it.

The Victorian State Government reassured us that the improved contract tracing and capabilities would prevent another wave from occurring. Now that the rubber has hit the road, it is time to see if they can.
Sounds like you have the same sort of provincial experimentation that goes on in the US. The states are largely left alone in terms of restrictions at the local level, and it is interesting to see the outcomes. What's the story on the vaccine roll-out in your country? Hopefully, you all don't have the operational challenges that we are facing nationwide.
2021-01-02 15:21:39
Being on an 'island' must make it better. I know in the U.S Hawaii has a great control of their situation because of their island status. 

Yeah Brandon I've heard of these operational challenges. Apparently we've had the vaccine for awhile and now many doses are expiring and we can't find people wililng to take them?

I've even seen people on Twitter suggesting that the goverment just pay people to take it. 

My friend has been bullish on the Vaccine and life returning to normal by March, but I told him that based on how the U.S has handled this entire storm I wasn't confident that the rollout was going to be so smooth.

And when I say U.S I don't mean just the leaders. I mean us people too, if not even more.
2021-01-02 16:39:18
We are watching with interest the rollout of the vaccines in the US and UK, but the Federal Government here is in no hurry to give emergency approval to a  vaccine. So they are planning to start vaccinations in March and expect the whole population could be vaccinated by October this year.
As an island continent, we have an advantage when it comes to controlling the borders. Our outbreaks are small, but, we are fortunate that our state government takes any outbreak seriously and is keen to get on top. The majority of the population are supportive of the government's efforts, including face masks and other restrictions.
Vaccination is part of the plan to return to normal, but, it is generally accepted that it is not part of the immediate response.
2021-01-02 23:45:18
Yes COVID has exposed the need for cooperation the need for a dependence for govt mandates. I remember being so shocked at hearing how Taiwan has something like a chip to know who went where and what their health information is. They have controlled this outbreak with so much more efficiency but the people had to accept that level of control. Until COVID, most people never thought a situation would arise where sacrifice of privacy and govt dependence was so clear and necessary. 
2021-01-03 00:31:09

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