The COVID-related messaging across Australia has been pretty vivid of late - states are "balancing on a knife's edge", regions are likened to "tinderboxes waiting to explode".
And while leaders today used that language (and more), some words often missing from the national lexicon on matters pandemic were uttered, too.
NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant used the word "vulnerable" and, for the second successive day, alluded to the equitable distribution of vaccines based on need first, regardless of nationality or wealth (AKA "vaccine equity").
With dozens more positive cases recorded just overnight in NSW's western region, the "vaccine equity" across the vastness that is Australia comes into question.
It is a subject Time magazine shared with its audience only yesterday. Reporter Amy Gunia explained the situation the NSW town of Goodooga finds itself in. She says, "residents were able to access vaccines for the first time just last week when a vaccine popup opened in the local park".
She also referenced Pat Turner, the chief executive of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) who told the ABC: "I can't be any blunter. If COVID-19 gets into our communities we are gone." That was in March 2020.
Now, the best part of 18 months later, the "progress" has been pathetic: only one in four NDIS participants are vaxxed; only one in three disability workers are vaxxed; just 16% of Indigenous people are fully vaxxed.
Almost 450 cases have been confirmed among Aboriginal people, according to NACCHO. More than 200 of those are in communities in the west of NSW.
But wait. There's a "hospital within a hospital" being built at Narromine to take COVID-19 patients who aren't in need of high-level care at nearby Dubbo; and some of the vulnerable - 12-year-old Marlia Middleton for instance - have been jabbed. It's a start.
So, too, perhaps is the news that NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard signed a public health order mandating vaccination for healthcare workers and aged care workers in the state.
In his statement Mr Hazzard said: "The great news is eight in 10 (80 per cent) of all NSW Health staff have already had their first dose of COVID-19 vaccination." It's a start.
Then there's Queensland's Annastacia Palaszczuk who revealed a dedicated regional quarantine facility west of Toowoomba would be partially operational by year's end.
You know what? It's a start.
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