ACT retail to open with density limits

Eased COVID-19 restrictions will allow more retail stores to open from Friday in the ACT.
Eased COVID-19 restrictions will allow more retail stores to open from Friday in the ACT.

The ACT is due to ease COVID-19 restrictions from midnight Thursday after the territory eclipsed the 80 per cent fully vaccinated threshold this week.

All retail will be allowed to open with density limits of one person per four square metres.

The ACT health minister is also set to be grilled on the territory's public health system on Thursday.

Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith is due to face an ACT assembly inquiry just a day after she announced a vaccine mandate for disability support workers and community-based aged care workers.

Workers in these sectors will need to have a first dose by November 1 and be fully vaccinated by November 29.

It follows similar mandates in NSW, Victoria and the Northern Territory.

The mandate now allows eligible disability providers in the ACT to claim $100 per worker per jab through the National Disability Insurance Agency.

The payment can be claimed retrospectively and is in place to help cover additional costs disability support providers incur in enabling their staff to get vaccinated.

Almost nine in 10 screened disability workers under the National Disability Insurance Scheme in the ACT have had one dose, and more than eight in ten are fully vaccinated as of October 18.

The new mandate was announced as the ACT recorded 24 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday.

Twenty people needed hospitalisation and eight were in intensive care.

Australian Associated Press