Australia's top medical officer has told the states not to stockpile vaccines, after an unvaccinated nurse working on Brisbane's COVID-19 frontline caught the virus and sparked a statewide lockdown.

Queensland Health Minister Yvette D'Ath said the state had held back some second doses, concerned about consistency of supply.

Ms D'Ath said the state "couldn't be sure" when the Pfizer delivery would arrive in Australia and eventually reach the states.

 

"We don't want to vaccinate all of these people and then turn around in 21 days and say sorry we can't give you the second vaccine because we don't have enough," she said.

"We have to be careful to make sure that we manage the vaccines, so we've done that."

But chief medical officer Professor Paul Kelly on Tuesday said individual states should not hold onto vaccines, and that the Federal government was keeping a second dose available for every person who had received a first dose.

"There is no need for a state or territory to be keeping any vaccine aside," Professor Kelly said.

"From the very beginning we've been very clear how much vaccine is coming in and how much has been distributed to the places where the vaccine can be given."

It's understood the nurse was scheduled to get her coronavirus vaccination this week.

Queensland reported ten new cases on Tuesday, with fears the UK variant may have spread into NSW after the nurse travelled to Byron Bay for a hen's party with her sister.

The Federal Government declared Greater Brisbane a hotspot and cautioned against those hoping to travel from other states over Easter, warning they might not be able to return easily.

No local cases of COVID-19 have been identified in NSW, however contact tracing continues for cases from Queensland who have attended venues in Northern NSW.

Australian Government Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Gary Ramage
Australian Government Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Gary Ramage

The NSW Health Department on Tuesday announced two fresh at risk locations for Byron Bay, listing an additional time slot for the Byron Beach hotel for Friday March 26 between 7.15pm and 9pm, with a second alert for the popular local restaurant Three Blue Ducks on Sunday March 28 between 8.45am and 9.30am.

Professor Kelly said the situation in Queensland was escalating and the Byron Bay region was at significant risk.

"I can't predict what's going to happen in the next week or two," he said.

"What happens now in relation to lockdown and very strong public health action, hopefully that will get on top of it.

"But at the moment those numbers are increasing."

Originally published as Top doctor's Queensland warning


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