Kidney transplants halted due to coronavirus, organs to be discarded

“We’re worried that in the present environment, the risks of dying soon after transplant are greatly increased,” Professor Chadban said. “It is much safer to keep somebody on dialysis rather than expose them to a kidney transplant and heavy immunosuppression [drugs] whereby we believe we would greatly increase their risk of getting severe disease if they caught [SARS-CoV-2].” Professor Chadban said there was “a distinct possibility” that patients waiting for heart, lung and liver transplants could die if ICUs reached capacity – which some experts predict will occur within weeks…

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280,000 ask Centrelink for help in one day

Centrelink has also started training 1500 new staff members to take calls and redirected 1500 staff away from back office roles at Services Australia, its parent agency, to instead process payments and speak to those who need assistance. The Morrison government will pay those who have lost work due to coronavirus $550 a week on top of standard welfare payments as part of measures to help tens of thousands of newly unemployed, but the supplement does not come into effect until April 27. On Wednesday, Centrelink introduced a new “intent…

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AFL, players remain at loggerheads

But sources say the AFL wants a bigger cut and there is also a question of the length of time of any reduction when no one can say with any certainty when or if the season will resume. The AFL’s demand comes as league heavyweights open discussion with major banks, including the NAB, attempting to receive a line of credit that sources said was expected to exceed $600 million. But the banks have asked to see evidence that the AFL is restructuring its business; hence the massive cut of staff…

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Critics slam policy allowing early emergency access to super

“There has to be a more direct payment going to the people being affected – some kind of wage subsidy arrangement. These people shouldn’t have to rely on the goodwill of employers to keep them going or on their retirement savings,” he said. The government has also increased JobSeeker payments to those who find themselves out of work. Former Superannuation Minister Nick Sherry ruled out early access to super during the global financial crisis on the basis it would impact liquidity of the funds. While Mr Sherry acknowledged funds had…

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Docker Sturt in box seat for Rising Star

The AFL called a halt to the season after round one, and will not re-start the campaign until May 31 at the earliest due to the coronavirus pandemic. If the AFL is unable to resume competition this year, it would give the league a unique dilemma of whether to award Sturt the Rising Star award in a season that consisted of just one game. Sturt suffered multiple concussions, keeping him on the sidelines for much of 2019, but his debut performance against Essendon showed he is a star of the…

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Housing market to slump as ‘open for inspections’ cancelled

He said it would be a much bigger impact than previous shocks to the market including the 25 per cent fall during the global financial crisis. “Buying property and selling property requires a big commitment and confidence and that’s just disappearing,” he said. But REA Group chief executive Owen Wilson warned some of the reactions to the new rules were “over-stated”, and auctions were a minority of property sales, while he expected prices might reduce slightly rather than crash. “At the moment, we haven’t seen the drop in listings but…

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Two of 100 fever clinics up and running as Defence weighs up its contribution

There is no plan for the ADF to use its testing stations for the wider population. A new unit set up within the ADF, led by three-star general John Frewen, is also deploying personnel across the country to assist in tracking down Australians who have been in contact with confirmed COVID-19 cases. The two Commonwealth-funded fever clinics already in operation are in the northern Sydney and northern Brisbane primary health networks. Labor has urged the Morrison government to call in the ADF to help roll out the 100 fever clinics…

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G8 expert panel chair defends government’s COVID-19 plan

Shitij Kapur, dean of medicine at the University of Melbourne, praised the government for seeking a range of expert opinions and said advice on “very complex, unprecedented circumstances is not black and white”, which was why the group he chaired had canvassed a diversity of views on how to escalate social distancing measures. Loading “We have to all humbly recognise that we don’t know the perfect answer and people who have to reduce all the advice into an actionable decision have a very tough task to do,” he told The…

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Unions and employers racing to strike job-saving deals

A similar deal struck on Tuesday in the hotel and bar industry saw unions agree to accept reduced hours for full and part-time staff until the end of the year so workers could keep an income, albeit reduced, in the face of the Morrison government’s industry-wide lockdown. Wes Lambert, chief executive of the Restaurant and Catering Association, said the discussions were “collaborative” and he expected an agreement to be reached by Thursday. Sources on the union side said the same. Jack Chen, the manager of Good Luck Hotpot, sits in…

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