‘We cannot remain obsessed’ with COVID case numbers as vaccination rates increase

Nationals Senator Matt Canavan says the infectiousness of the virus should not be a reason to remain closed with high vaccination rates, amid premiers threatening to keep their borders closed.

Mr Canavan defended Doherty Institute modelling, saying it is not meant to predict everything.

“I’m never a slave to this type of modelling, it can’t precisely tell you how many cases there’ll be or how many unfortunate fatalities there will be, it doesn’t work like that,” he told Sky News Australia.

He said Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk wants to “make Queensland as isolated as some cave in Afghanistan” to avoid the virus.

He said, while premiers should not take all the blame, they should if they continue lockdowns after vaccine targets have been met.

“There is about to be a time where they should be blamed for the further insensitive pain they are inflicting on many small businesses, on many poor people who don’t have any other alternative for work.

“They have to start to factor in these other issues, we cannot remain obsessed with the number of coronavirus cases.”