Under the coronavirus recovery plan announced in late April, the federal government was hoping that Australia would be largely opened up by July.
The outbreak in Melbourne changed that.
Morrison said he can’t now guess when Australia might be in the position to fully open up again, but said he is “encouraged” by what he has seen in NSW tracking and tracing the outbreak there.
Basically, he is encouraged by every state and territory except Victoria.
I think once we get a better read on where these numbers are in Victoria and hopefully we will see better numbers from Victoria today, but we do not know.
New Zealand to start charging some travellers for hotel quarantine
Australia facing “sustained community transmission” says Prime Minister
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the country is now experiencing the same issues as every other country that has had “sustained community transmission,” as there is now in Victoria:
Where there is sustained community transmission, it is inevitable that this will find its way into aged care facilities. When it rains, everyone gets wet.
And that is what we’re seeing with broad-based community transmission in Victoria. As the [Victorian premier Daniel Andrews] rightly said, if you are ill, do not go to work. That is true if you work in a meat processing plant, it is true if you work in a chemist shop, it is true if you work in a restaurant, it is true if you’re a journalist, a politician, whoever you may be, an aged care worker especially.
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Covid-19: Florida reports record one-day deaths as concerns grow for other states
Trump storms out of press conference
Trump ended his press conference abruptly on Tuesday after sustained questioning from CNN’s Kaitlan Collins over a video he had shared by a doctor who said masks don’t work and that there is a cure for Covid-19.
In past videos, said Collins, the doctor has claimed that medicines are made from “alien DNA”.
“I thought she was very impressive,” Trump said of the woman in the disinformation video he promoted.
Here’s more background from colleagues Joan E Greve and Martin Pengelly:
The video in question featured Dr Stella Immanuel, a physician from Houston, Texas, speaking on the steps of the US Capitol in Washington, surrounded by members of a rightwing doctors’ group.
Immanuel made baseless claims about coronavirus, including hailing hydroxychloroquine as a “cure”, even though the drug, which has been repeatedly touted by the president, has not been found to be an effective treatment.
The Houston doctor has also dismissed mounting evidence that face masks substantially help limit the spread of coronavirus.
Before Trump walked off, he said he did not know why Twitter and Facebook removed the hydroxychloroquine video he promoted:
.@kaitlancollins: The woman you say is a ‘great doctor’ said masks don’t work & doctors make medicine using DNA from aliens-
TRUMP: “I can tell you this: She was on air, along with many other doctors, & they were big fans of hydroxychloroquine. I thought she was very impressive” pic.twitter.com/nSui8DOLDL
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar)July 28, 2020
Trump blames US case surge on protestors
At a White House Press briefing late on Tuesday, US President Donald Trump blamed surging infections on the Black Lives Matter and George Floyd Protests, despite epidemiologists not conclusively linking the protests following the police killing of George Floyd to the huge spike in cases, my colleague Maanvi Singh reports.
The surge in cases across the US came as cities reopened businesses and indoor venues, where the coronavirus transmits more effectively. Last week, Dr Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force co-ordinator recently linked the surge in cases to the Memorial Day weekend, which saw businesses opening up and people travelling again.
Trump was also asked about the persistent absence of Dr Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, at Donald Trump’s briefings.
In response, the president mused about his health official’s approval rating.
Fauci has “got a very good approval rating and I like that”, Trump told reporters. And Fauci was working with the administration, “so why don’t I have a very high approval rating?” the president wondered out loud.
“But nobody likes me,” Trump said. “It can only be my personality, that’s all.”
This morning, Fauci was asked about the coronavirus disinformation that Trump has promoted on social media during an interview with ABC. “I don’t tweet, I don’t even read them. I don’t really want to go there,” he told Good Morning America. “I just will continue to do my job, no matter what comes out, because I think it’s very important.”