Jetstar has refused to cop the blame for allowing passengers from coronavirus-hit Melbourne to disembark in Sydney without COVID-19 health checks.
NSW Health have been contacting the 48 passengers aboard Tuesday night's Jetstar flight JQ520 who left Sydney Airport without a second health screening.
NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant noted that only five passengers were yet to be tested, with that to happen on Thursday.
The protocol breach has been attributed to airline staff letting customers leave the gate area before health staff had finished screening an earlier flight.
But Jetstar chief executive Gareth Evans argued NSW Health officials were equally responsible and may have been at the wrong aerobridge or watching another aircraft.
"I don't think it's appropriate to be apportioning blame," he told reporters on Thursday.
"There was not a NSW Health official in the aerobridge. There should have been.
"Our people should have held the aircraft, they didn't."
Mr Evans denied he owed the public an apology, insisting the risk to the community was "very, very low" as passengers had been screened in Melbourne with temperature and ID checks.
"It was a double-check," he said.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt on Thursday said his department had intervened to help NSW authorities with contact tracing and tightening domestic flight protocols.
"We have to focus on making sure that everything that is being done at the state level is being done at the right level," Mr Hunt told the Nine Network.
Jetstar welcomed the federal health department's intercession, calling for nationwide screening rules to simplify matters for their staff.
Tuesday's airport bungle also dredged up memories of the Ruby Princess saga and the disembarkation without checks of hundreds of coronavirus-positive passengers in Sydney, but Mr Evans categorically rejected the comparison.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Thursday acknowledged "little hiccups" were a given amid a pandemic but backed her health authority's version of events.
All passengers who disembarked the flight should be in 14 days of self-isolation as part of NSW coronavirus protocols for those arriving from Victoria.
Of the 137 who disembarked in Sydney, 89 were screened before leaving the airport.
NSW Greens MP Cate Faehrmann on Wednesday called on state Health Minister Brad Hazzard to investigate the incident after he made earlier assurances all passengers arriving from Victoria would be screened at Sydney Airport.
© AAP 2020