The son of a dying Queensland man is pleading with the state’s health department to grant him permission to farewell his dad after flying into the country from the US this week.
Mark and his wife Anneli arrived in Sydney from Los Angeles, California on Tuesday morning after receiving clearance from the Department of Home Affairs and NSW Health.
The couple, who have been fully vaccinated, were given a quarantine exemption on compassionate grounds and agreed to pay $15,000 to charter a plane to the Gold Coast, where the elderly man is dying of pancreatic cancer.
Mr Anneli said despite making it to Australia just hours before his dad was admitted to hospital, Queensland Health had rejected his quarantine exemption application multiple times.
“All we are hoping is to see my dad Frans before he passes and to say goodbye. Time is of the essence as he is not expected to last much more than a few days,” he wrote in a Change.org petition.
Mark Kilian’s father Frans in hospital. Picture: Change.orgSource:Supplied
His dad was rushed to Robina Hospital on the Gold Coast on Tuesday afternoon after his conditioned worsened on hearing news his son and daughter-in-law were being denied access to him.
Mr Anneli’s 91-year-old mum, who requires around-the-clock care, has also been suffering significantly in the past week, he said.
The pair have been fully vaccinated since April, according to the petition, and returned negative results on Covid-19 tests both before leaving the US and after arriving in Australia.
Mark Kilian is desperate to see his dying dad on the Gold Coast.
Border Force and NSW Health granted him an exemption to enter Australia, but the Queensland government has denied him the chance to say goodbye 😔
Sign his petition: https://t.co/Lvw7rf48clpic.twitter.com/H5Qo1xjzeb
“My dad’s doctor emphasised in an appeal letter to QLD Health that we present a minimal health risk to the people of Queensland and the Department of Home Affairs determined that ‘the circumstances outweigh the risk to the Australian community,’” Mr Anneli wrote.
He said the US consulate had also urged the Queensland government to “balance the compelling compassionate circumstances of this dying Australian citizen and his family against the extremely low risk to community public health”.
Mr Anneli stressed his desire to say “goodbye to my dying father and to be able to be there to care for my mother”.
Queensland Health has stood firm on its decision to deny entry to the couple, with a spokesperson on Tuesday saying the department intended to “put the safety of the Queensland community first”.
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