SA establishes transition team to manage post COVID-19

04 May 2020
SA establishes transition team to manage post COVID-19

To guide the delicate process of both continuing to move out of the COVID-19 health emergency and restore the social and economic health of the State, the Marshall Government has established a broad high-level transition team.

While maintaining the vigilance of our public health response, the highly credentialed Transition Committee will look at which restrictions should be eased and in what order, as we take the next steps to return the State’s economy and community way of life to the new normal.

“South Australia has managed this global pandemic with strength and resolve. Everyone’s efforts of adhering to the rules has flatlined new cases of COVID-19 in our state,” said Premier Steven Marshall.

“As a consequence of South Australia’s deep community spirit and our world leading health response we are well placed to take the next steps in dealing with COVID-19. This is something everyone in our state should be proud of achieving.

“The Transition Committee will ensure that we can capitalise on the efforts made to flatten the COVID-19 curve by lifting restrictions, where appropriate, so we can forge ahead with the difficult task of flattening the unemployment curve.

“My Government’s job has been to save lives throughout this period. Our new challenge is to reboot the economy, but also manage the continuing threat of COVID-19 outbreaks.

“Strong community support was vital to the success of the public health initiatives so far. It will be doubly important in the way ahead.

“Our level of suppression of the coronavirus will enable a selective, methodical, evidence-based easing of the restrictions that are currently in place in South Australia and we are going to be working on that immediately.”

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Stephen Wade said the Transition Committee has been tasked with prioritising the easing restrictions with a low public health risk and high social and economic value.

“The Transition Committee will develop the blueprint for how South Australia’s current restriction can be wound back whilst ensuring we are not exposed to a dangerous second wave of infections,” said Minister Wade.

"Our approach has been strongly built on public health advice. As we have done to this point, we will continue to align with the advice of the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC), and the decisions of National Cabinet.

“Winter is just around the corner and COVID-19 is a sneaky, dangerous disease that can infect a community in the blink of an eye. The first wave of the pandemic showed us that we are blessed with a world class team of public health clinicians. We will need to continue to trust their advice to ensure the impact of COVID-19 on South Australians is minimised.

“South Australia has controlled the virus without resorting to the much tougher restrictions on social interaction that have been adopted by other Australian states.

“The eastern seaboard restricted social gathering to just two people, banned golf, closed their beaches, and shut their schools. South Australia did none of that.

“South Australia has flattened the curve and pushed out the peak better than almost any other jurisdiction in the world, whilst maintaining modest, targeted restrictions.”

“That demonstrates the skill of our public health clinicians and the wisdom of the whole emergency management team to make sure that we do whatever we need to do to deal with this public health emergency - but no more.

“For months, we will need to work hard to comply with restrictions that will be constantly changing. We can live with the frustration, knowing that it will get us back to normal life quicker.

“Let’s not undo all the good.”

The Committee membership is listed below, and will work hand in glove with Cabinet:

• Chief Executive, Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Jim McDowell (chair);
• Commissioner, South Australia Police, Grant Stevens;
• Chief Public Health Officer, Professor Nicola Spurrier;
• Chief Executive, Department for Health and Wellbeing, Dr Chris McGowan;
• Chief Executive, Department of Treasury and Finance, David Reynolds; and
• Chief Executive, Department for Trade and Investment, Leonie Muldoon.