“There is still a lot of time to go and do that.”
But two peak bodies are calling on the government to reconsider the decision, with COVID-19 cases, hospitalisations and deaths on the rise.
“Testing remains a vital part of our COVID-19 response … governments should be encouraging more testing, not less.”
Mr Butler said some state governments provided free RATs for people visiting high-risk settings such as aged care facilities and hospitals.
“All of the modelling indicates that case numbers and hospitalisations have further to go over probably the next four to six weeks,” he told 3AW.
NSW and Western Australia have already followed suit.
Pandemic leave payments
“We inherited the former government’s decision on this and we also inherited $1 trillion of debt,” he told reporters in Sydney.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese gets his fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose at a chemist in Rozelle, Sydney, on Tuesday. Source: AAP / Dean Lewins
“They are circumstances which my government faces … there are a range of things we would like to do, but we intend to be fiscally responsible in how we deal with issues”.
“We will continue to take advice on these issues by health experts, and we’ve acted on all the advice that has been given during the pandemic.”