Preparing for government quarantine for parents of new born babies
Starting from midnight last night, those arriving in Australia are required to be in Government quarantine upon arrival for 14 days at their place of arrival. Australian Defence Force personnel have been deployed to enforce the rules. For parents who have undertaken surrogacy overseas and brought their newborn children (and sometimes older children as well) this poses extra challenges, including having enough supplies.
For those who arrive in one place and have to fly to another, there might be two lots of quarantine last a month. In addition to the international quarantine requirements, the Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia require arrivals by air to be quarantined for 14 days. Travellers arriving in Sydney, for example, and flying to the Gold Coast will first have to undertake Government quarantine in a hotel chosen by the Government in Sydney. Once those 14 days are up, they can fly on to the Gold Coast, but will then be required to self-isolate for another 14 days. By the time they get to fly to the Gold Coast, who knows if the quarantine will be Government quarantine, too.
The supplies to travellers are the responsibility of the Government. Yesterday in my daily self-isolation call with the Red Cross, I was told- definitively- that the Red Cross is not involved in providing supplies to those travellers, nor has Red Cross Australia been asked to check on the welfare of those travellers. Hopefully this changes. Instead I was told that the issue of urgent supplies might be covered by the Community Recovery Hotline 1800 173 349.
There have been reports from Sydney of travellers complaining of the standard of accommodation, and the unreliability of food, or at least the quality of food being providing to the travellers.
For parents who have returned from overseas, delays in the provision of vital supplies should be assumed. Therefore, parents should ensure as much as possible they bring supplies with them to tide them over. If they are relying on formula, they should not assume that the same formula will be provided by the government.
A useful checklist of what supplies can be brought can be found here. Travellers bringing baby formula and other baby food need to declare it.