31 December 2021

NSW Health is urging the community to continue to practise COVID-safe behaviours while celebrating the New Year.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said that while many people are understandably looking forward to celebrating the New Year, it is important to do so in a way that keeps people safe and minimises the risk of transmission.

One of the most effective ways of reducing the spread of COVID-19 is to socialise with others as much as possible outdoors, and ensure good ventilation when indoors.

"We know it's been a challenging year for everyone, and we understand people want to come together to celebrate the New Year. We thank the community for their incredible efforts to stay COVID-safe and ask them to continue these behaviours."

"But it's important to remember that COVID-19 is active in our communities and people are at an increased risk of contracting COVID-19, particularly in indoor environments," Dr Chant said.

"We're urging people to avoid mingling in large groups where possible and hold your events outside if you can. If you're inside, keep your gathering small and make sure the area is well ventilated by opening doors and windows."

If heading to a venue, use the Service NSW check-in app where available, wear a mask and practise physical distancing.

Rapid antigen testing can be an additional precaution that you can take if you are planning to socialise with large groups of people, particularly indoors, or interacting with people who are elderly or have health conditions. Information on how to use rapid antigen tests is available on the NSW Government website.

Stay home and do not visit family, friends or go to social events if you are unwell. People should monitor for symptoms and undertake a PCR test if any occur.

NSW Health encourages everyone who is eligible to book into a NSW Health vaccination clinic or another provider without delay through the COVID-19 vaccine clinic finder.

Booster doses of COVID-19 vaccine are now available for people aged 18 and over. We urge people to get their booster dose as soon as they are eligible, to best protect yourself, your loved ones, and the community from the ongoing transmission of COVID-19.