Travel bans continue
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has warned all Australians not to travel overseas and has called on citizens who are currently abroad to return home. Virgin Australia has been the latest airline to slash flights, following Qantas and Jetstar cutting 90 per cent of their international flights and 60 per cent of domestic flights yesterday. Virgin will ground its international fleet and will slash domestic capacity by half.
“We have entered an unprecedented time in the global aviation industry,” Virgin Australia’s CEO and Managing Director Paul Scurrah said.
“(That) has required us to take significant action to responsibly manage our business while balancing traveller demands and supporting the wellbeing of Australians.”
Following the pre-existing ban restricting mass outdoor gatherings to 500 people, the Morrison Government has also banned large indoor gatherings of more than 100 people. This is for non-essential gatherings, and excludes schools, universities, airports, public transport, medical and emergency service facilities, aged care homes, courts, jails, parliaments, supermarkets, and many workplaces.
Aged care restrictions
Restrictions have been placed on aged care homes, only allowing residents two visitors at a time, one time a day. Anyone who has been travelling overseas or in contact with a confirmed coronavirus case within a fortnight will be banned from visiting aged care homes.
ANZAC Day cancelled
The Federal Government has announced all Australian-led international ANZAC Day services will be cancelled this year. NSW, QLD, WA and Tasmania have also cancelled services due to the advice to ban mass gatherings.
COVID-19 testing kits
Almost 100,000 coronavirus testing kits are coming to Australia this week to boost diminishing stock levels. More than 81,000 tests have been undertaken so far, with 414 Australians returning positive results. To help hospitals and emergency departments respond to the crisis, work restrictions on 20,000 student nurses has been lifted.