Headlines

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  • Dan Andrews 20210915001576352451 600x400

    Vic roadmap unveiled, 7 day lockdown for Geelong

    Melbourne's controversial curfew will be scrapped, with people able to travel up to 25 kilometres and have a beer outside the pub once 70 per cent of Victorians aged over 16 are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. But the most substantial changes to the…
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    Regional Victoria exits COVID-19 lockdown

    A Lockdown will be lifted in regional Victoria, with the exception of the town of Shepparton which is still battling a coronavirus outbreak. The state has recorded 221 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, but most are in Melbourne. "Regional…
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    Virus 'ripping families apart': Syd nurse

    An intensive care nurse working in one of NSW's worst COVID-19 hotspots says the virus is "ripping families apart" and taking an enormous physical and emotional toll on healthcare workers. More than 870 COVID-19 patients are in hospital in NSW, with 143 in…
  • 20210828 SA Health Alert

    SA names sites linked to infected truckies

    South Australian authorities have identified petrol stations linked to truck drivers who travelled through three states in WA, before testing positive to COVID-19. The two drivers were tested as part of routine surveillance in NSW on Wednesday, but being…
  • Daniel Andrews 20210815001567004650 600x400

    Regional Victoria to return to lockdown

    Regional Victorians will re-enter lockdown at 1pm on Saturday as authorities scramble to contain a COVID-19 outbreak centred on the city of Shepparton. Victoria recorded 61 new locally acquired virus cases on Saturday, including 39 in the community while…
  • coronavirus update

    Launceston "clear" of COVID scare

    Tasmania's Director of Public Health says the coronavirus scare in Lauceston earlier this month is now well and truly behind us. A traveller from Sydney, who came without a border pass via Melbourne, tested positive in hotel quarantine at Peppers Seaport then…
  • coronavirus update

    Woman pinged for border breach

    There's a stark warning to travellers attempting to breach Fortress Tasmania. A woman who arrived in Launceston on a flight from Sydney at the weekend has become the first to receive the now-doubled fine of $1557. The Tasmanian, aged in her 70s, was fined…
  • Daniel Andrews 20210815001567004650 600x400

    Melbourne lockdown extended, curfew back

    Melbourne's lockdown has been extended by two weeks and a night curfew will be reimposed, in an effort to stamp out the state's latest outbreak of the Delta coronavirus variant. Premier Daniel Andrews on Monday announced the extension, as well as a raft of…
  • Coronavirus latest news2

    QR codes for taxis and Ubers after Launceston scare

    Tasmania is yet to detect any COVID cases after an infected man's brief stay in a Launceston quarantine hotel last week. A total of more than 6000 tests have come back negative in the five days after the man's positive test and the situation is now considered…
  • Aurora

    Hawks vs Pies in Launceston called off

    Collingwood's first ever AFL match in Tasmania has been abandoned after the state's first coronavirus case in 238 days sent hundreds of Launcestonians into isolation. The highly anticipated Sunday fixture at UTAS Stadium was a sell out, despite the crowd…
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    Vic to enter its sixth lockdown at 8pm

    Victoria will enter a seven-day lockdown in an effort to contain a growing outbreak of the COVID-19 Delta variant in Melbourne's western suburbs. Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed the lockdown will begin at 8pm on Thursday, after the state recorded eight new…
  • Launceston streetscape

    Qld arrivals nabbed for flagrant COVID rule breach

    Police appear to have finally lost patience with those flouting Tasmanian Health's stay-at-home orders in the wake of the Queensland COVID-19 Delta outbreak. Two people who recently arrived in Launceston from south east Queensland have been fined $774 each.…
  • steve marshall 20210727001560806593 600x400

    SA considers tougher Queensland rules

    South Australians in Queensland have been urged to consider returning as soon as possible as the Sunshine State continues to battle a COVID-19 outbreak. With southeast Queensland in lockdown, SA residents are still allowed to return provided they spend 14…
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    Victoria tightens border bubble with NSW

    Victoria is tightening the NSW border bubble, banning non-essential movement across state lines over the threat of Sydney's worsening COVID-19 outbreak. From 11.59pm on Tuesday, border bubble residents will only be able to cross state lines for six reasons…
  • steven marshall 20201117001503789252 600x400

    No new virus infections in South Australia

    South Australia will end its COVID-19 lockdown on schedule after reporting no new virus infections. Premier Steven Marshall says the result is a "huge relief" and will allow the shutdown to end at one minute past midnight on Wednesday. "So a massive thank you…
  • Coronavirus latest news2

    List of Vic restrictions as lockdown ends

    VICTORIA'S EASED RESTRICTIONS FROM 11:59PM ON TUESDAY: * The 5km travel limit will be removed as well as the stay-at -home requirement. * Movement between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria will be unrestricted. * Masks will be required everywhere…
  • Nicola Spurrier 20210722001559061750 600x400

    South Australia set to end lockdown

    South Australia will likely end its week-long COVID-19 lockdown on time after reporting one new virus infection linked to the Modbury cluster, Premier Steven Marshall says. The premier says the shutdown will end at one minute past midnight on Wednesday…
  • daniel andrews 20201122001504608787 600x400

    Victoria to spend another week in lockdown

    Victoria's lockdown will be extended for a further seven days as authorities work to "extinguish" an outbreak of the highly contagious Delta coronavirus variant. The lockdown was initially due to end on Tuesday night, but Premier Daniel Andrews announced…
  • steven marshall 20201117001503789252 600x400

    SA to lock down after fifth virus case

    South Australia is moving into a full seven-day lockdown after a cluster of local COVID-19 cases grew to five. The fifth case, a man in his 60s, is someone who dined at a restaurant in Adelaide where previously infected people were also present on Saturday…
  • steven marshall 20201117001503789252 600x400

    SA COVID restrictions after virus cases

    South Australia has imposed widespread coronavirus restrictions, including closing all non-essential retail outlets, following the discovery of a second COVID-19 case. The daughter of an 81-year-old man has now tested positive along with her father after the…

Virus could force school holiday extension

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School holidays could be extended as Australia considers increasingly drastic measures to contain the coronavirus after it was declared a global pandemic.

The nation now has more than 120 confirmed cases and the World Health Organisation has warned more infections and deaths are inevitable without urgent, aggressive action.

In Australia, that could mean forcing the nation's primary and high school students to extend their Easter school holidays, federal Education Minister Dan Tehan has warned on Thursday.

He says medical advice will guide the decision and the government won't be rushed even though a last-minute call could leave working parents in a bind.

"It might be that school holidays need to be prolonged," he told ABC television on Thursday.

"We'll listen to that medical advice and we'll act on it. But the most important thing is we've put contingencies in place to be able to deal with it."

As more confirmed cases emerged overnight, the federal government has outlined its plan to stave off a recession.

The stimulus package is expected to top $15 billion and will deliver tax relief for businesses alongside cash payments of $25,000 to help them weather the economic storm and keep their workers in jobs.

Support for welfare recipients and pensioners is also expected after the World Health Organisation declared the coronavirus crisis a global pandemic.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has confirmed this year's budget won't be in surplus. He also admitted the business payments come with no strings attached but urged owners to use the handouts wisely.

"We say to all of those businesses: 'We're doing our bit to support you, we want you to support your staff during this period'," he told ABC radio.

Economists predict Australia could fall into recession, but it won't be known until at least two consecutive quarters of economic data show negative growth.

The March and June quarter numbers compiled by the Australian Bureau of Statistics won't be released until later this year.

The Council of Australian Governments will meet on Friday to discuss the stimulus plans of the states and territories, which will be on top of the federal government's measures.

There were 12 new cases of coronavirus confirmed in NSW overnight, taking the total number to 77.

Four of those 12 were not people who had recently travelled overseas, leaving questions about how they became infected.

NSW Chief Medical Officer Kerry Chant has told anyone who is sick, regardless of recent overseas travel, to stay at home and away from any large gatherings.

"The best thing you can do is stay at home if you're unwell. Don't push through, don't go to workplaces, don't go and visit loved ones in aged care facilities, don't go and visit loved ones in hospital, and don't go to public events where you're going to be cheek and jowl," she said.

In declaring a global pandemic, WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said there was still a chance to limit the spread of the virus but he also pointed to "alarming levels of inaction".

"We cannot say this loudly enough, or clearly enough, or often enough: all countries can still change the course of this pandemic," he said.

"Ready your hospitals, protect and train your health workers, and let's all look out for each other because we need each other."

© AAP 2020

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