Senate debates

Monday, 23 March 2020

Questions without Notice

Coronavirus

2:35 pm

Photo of Michaelia CashMichaelia Cash (WA, Liberal Party, Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business) Share this | Hansard source

I thank Senator Roberts for his question. In relation to the gathering of data itself, I will take that on notice. But, in terms of the Australian government's approach, I will reconfirm what the Minister for Finance, the Leader of the Government in the Senate, has stated. This is an unprecedented challenge and it has required an unprecedented response. In terms of the Australian government's response, you'd be aware: Australia is well placed, with a world-class health system. We also have a health system and health emergency responses that are flexible, scalable and able to respond effectively to the evolving situation. Australia has been responding to rapid changes in the epidemiology of COVID-19 and has activated and is implementing the Australian Health Sector Emergency Response Plan for Novel Coronavirus, which, as you now know, is known as the COVID-19 Plan. Australia, because of the response that we have taken, is well placed to respond to ill travellers and those at risk of contracting infection, with border isolation, surveillance and contact tracing mechanisms already in place. You'll also be aware that a 24/7 national coronavirus health information line is available, on 1800020080. What this health line does is provide health and situation information on the COVID-19 outbreak.

Senator Roberts, I would also point out—this is very, very important: the Australian government is also aware of COVID-19 disinformation, misinformation and scams targeting Australians— (Time expired)

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