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Another AFL club given travel exemption for Adelaide game

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SA Health has allowed Geelong Football Club to travel to South Australia for Thursday night’s match against Port Adelaide, with players and coaching staff to fly in and out of the state on same-day charter flights.

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Chief public health officer Professor Nicola Spurrier told reporters that she signed a letter this morning authorising the Cats to travel from Victoria to Adelaide, provided the team complies with the same strict testing requirements that were imposed on Collingwood players for Saturday’s match against the Crows.

She said SA Health workers attended the Crows versus Collingwood match at Adelaide Oval and were “very happy” with how the teams complied with the testing and quarantine requirements.

The Geelong players will fly in and out of Adelaide on Thursday on a charter flight.

The aeroplane can only fit 50 people, meaning it will be allowed to take off past the 11pm Adelaide Airport curfew.

Spurrier said the Geelong team members were already quarantining in Victoria ahead of their flight to Adelaide.

“They will have to sign a declaration as they leave Victoria that they haven’t been in any exposure sites and again when they arrive in Adelaide,” she said.

“We’ve got SA Pathology on board to do the rapid turn-around of tests.”

Geelong players will be tested before they board the flight and when they land in Adelaide.

Once all players return negative test results, they will travel by bus to Adelaide Oval and will remain in a designated space guarded by security until the match starts.

They will also be required to wear masks at all times, except when they’re playing.

“I think it (the Crows versus Collingwood match) really proved that we can do this safely,” Spurrier said.

“Suffice to say, there are other Victorian teams that are going to other states and as chief health officers we’re aware of these sorts of things.

“We also talk amongst ourselves and look at various state protocols because at the end of the day, our job is to keep our own state (safe), but we’ve also got a national interest as well.”

Spurrier also announced that SA Health would run a “super Thursday” late-night coronavirus vaccination drive to encourage more aged-care workers to get vaccinated.

She said the Wayville, Noarlunga and Elizabeth vaccination clinics would be open late in the evening so that aged care workers who do shift-work have a chance to receive the Pfizer vaccination.

“We’re going to do that as a bit of a pilot to see whether people find that useful,” Spurrier said.

“If that’s successful, we will look at other nights of that sort of nature for other groups.”

Spurrier said from this week, disability care workers aged 16 and over would also be eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccination.

“I’m really pleased that we’re going to supercharge, I guess, that part of the vaccine rollout because we’ll be able to vaccinate those people more quickly,” she said.

Victoria reported two new local COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, both linked to existing outbreaks.

One is a child linked to the West Melbourne outbreak, while the other is a household contact of a worker linked to the Arcare Maidstone cluster.

A string of new exposure sites were added to the list of over 300 on Monday evening, including multiple McDonalds, Chemist Warehouses and 7Elevens spread across Melbourne.

It comes as South Australia opens up its vaccine eligibility to people in Adelaide aged 40 to 49.

The state is also making the vaccine available to anyone aged 16 years or older on Kangaroo Island with the opening of a new clinic.

Premier Steven Marshall announced that the Government would invest more than $86 million in the upcoming State Budget to fast track the rollout of the vaccine.

He said the Government was yet to decide whether it would use the funding to open up additional vaccination clinics across the state.

The vaccination commencement date for South Australians in the metropolitan area aged 16-40 is yet to be confirmed.

Just 613,000 people, or about 2.9 per cent of Australian adults, have received both doses.

– with AAP

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