Australians urged to stay home over Easter

Australians have been warned it’s vital they stick to social distancing rules over Easter as authorities continue to be concerned about the number of community transmitted coronavirus cases.

The daily increase in new cases has dropped to about three per cent on average but more than 500 people have been infected with COVID-19 by someone in the community who didn’t know they had it.

Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy says that’s why people shouldn’t be complacent.

The prime minister says a drop in new cases has bought valuable time but urges Australians to stay home over Easter otherwise it will completely undo everything achieved so far.

More than 5800 Australians have caught the coronavirus and 48 have died while about 2500 have recovered.

The government continues to work on the basis that the tough restrictions and economic support for businesses suffering under them will only need to be in place for six months.

Mr Morrison says the six-month timeframe for Australia’s economic support measures is one of the longest in the world.

Leaders and medical officials are now looking at how the nation will find its way out of the twin health and economic crises.

Professor Murphy says containment and quarantine is the best strategy since a vaccine for COVID-19 may not be found but if one was, “That’s a beautiful way out.”

The prime minister has cautioned the resources and ability of state and federal governments to keep up the economic lifeline are finite.

The biggest spend so far is the $130 billion over six months going to the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme.

Meanwhile, education ministers have agreed that all year 12 students will be able to finish school in 2020 despite the coronavirus-induced disruptions to their face-to-face education.

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