WA’s COVID updates — including cases, hospitalisations and deaths — will be reported weekly instead of daily from Friday.
State and Territory health ministers, including WA’s Amber-Jade Sanderson, have agreed to the change, which is supported by the chief health officers.
“Federal, State and Territory health ministers have agreed to transition to weekly reporting on COVID-19 statistics,” a statement issued by the ministers said.
“The move is supported by Chief Health Officers and comes as all Australians adjust to the continuing presence of COVID-19 in the community.
“COVID-19 data will be released each Friday by the Commonwealth, and all States and Territories, on information available up until the previous day (that is, each Thursday), until further notice.
“The alignment will provide comparable data on notifications, hospitalisations, ICU admissions and deaths across jurisdictions and nationally.”
WA Health said the last daily statement would be Friday, September 9, and the first weekly report would be made on Friday, September 16.
Mark McGowan’s social media accounts switched to weekly updates in July, but COVID data continued to be published daily on the WA Health Department website.
The move to only weekly reporting coincides with the removal of the mask mandate for domestic flights, public transport, taxis and rideshare vehicles from Friday.
The isolation period for COVID positive Australians also drops from seven days to five on the same date, despite WA CHO Andy Robertson warning there was a risk infections could increase.
Dr Robertson recommended anyone who was still symptomatic must remain at home until their acute symptoms had resolved, while workplaces needed to consider recommendations for staff returning to work following a five-day isolation period.
In recommending that masks only be mandatory in hospitals, prisons and aged care homes, he said that with limited community spread — most of which is occurring in household or social settings — the benefits of masks “has lessened”.
WA reported 5941 active cases on Tuesday, the fewest since the start of the State’s Omicron outbreak in February.
The number of COVID positive patients in hospital has plateaued at about 200 in recent days, including seven who required intensive care.