Australia is considered one of the successful countries in responding to and minimising the COVID-19 pandemic. The collaborative efforts among epidemiologists and health experts with state/territory and Commonwealth health departments helped stem the outbreak.
Our team members were at the forefront of responding to this pandemic. We aided the Commonwealth government in supporting the repatriation of Australian citizens and permanent residents from Wuhan, China to Christmas Island, Australia in February 2020, and provided expert advice on response measures.
Throughout 2020, our team members have contributed to the evidence that informs policies from aged and health care workers, to strengthening uptake of community testing, and improving surveillance methods to control COVID-19 and prevent the resurgence of the virus. Our advice is cited in multiple Commonwealth COVID-19 response handbooks, including the Series of National Guidelines, the National Disease Surveillance Plan for COVID-19, and the COVID-19 in Australia Public Health Intelligence Plan.
We continue to provide support to state/territory and Commonwealth health departments on vaccination rollouts and to develop a risk assessment and decision-making framework for COVID-19. Our work is helping to build Australia’s resilience against COVID-19 and other future pandemics.