Coronavirus: Government prohibits travel abroad and indoor non-essential

Mar 20, 2020

The federal government has banned non-essential indoor gatherings of 100 people or more and ordered Australians not to travel abroad due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The ban on outdoor gatherings of 500 or more people that has been in force since Monday is also maintained.

These restrictions do not apply to airports, public transportation, hotels, prisons, courts, shopping malls, educational centers and universities, offices and factories, construction sites, and medical and health services.

In these situations, Australians are encouraged to practice social distancing, staying at least 1.5 meters from the closest person.

As of today, there are 454 registered cases of COVID 19 infection throughout the country.

Medical director Brendan Murphy has explained that most of the new cases are imported and through direct contact with people who come from abroad.

Murphy has detailed that there are also cases of community transmission and that the only way is social distance. It has also announced that Australia will shortly receive 97,000 medical units to test for the coronavirus.

Travel bans

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the worldwide travel ban measure.

"Don't go abroad. That's a very clear instruction. For those who are thinking of going abroad during school vacations, don't do it. Don't go abroad."

Morrison said it was the first time in the nation's history that a blanket level four ban had been issued.

Morrison said the government was preparing for the impact of a pandemic that will last six months or more.

"We are going to keep Australia running. It will not appear to be doing it normally, but it is very important that we continue to implement measures that are scalable and sustainable."

"There is no two-week response to what we are facing. There is no short-term quick fix on how this is handled in Australia. The idea that you can suspend everything for two weeks and then activate everything again and that the problem it disappears, that's not the evidence, that's not the facts, that's not the information and it's not our way, "Morrison said.

Schools are kept open

Following the recommendations of health authorities, the government has said that schools should be kept open.

Morrison explained that the disruption of closing schools would be very severe, due to the impact this can have on the availability of health workers, and he referred to how this model was successful in the measures taken in Singapore against the pandemic. .

"It is a decision made for the good of the public interest," Morrison said.

Morrison explained that children are less affected by the coronavirus, based on experience in other countries, but urged parents to keep their children at home if they showed any signs of discomfort.

The Prime Minister has emphasized that this is the advice of experts such as Medical Director Brendan Murphy.

New restrictions for nursing homes

Morrison has announced new restrictions on visiting nursing homes.

Residences and visitors must now:

  • Limit visits to short times
  • Limit two visitors at a time, per day.
  • Visits should take place in the resident's room rather than in common areas.
  • There should be no visits or large group gatherings, including social or entertainment gatherings.
  • Visits to school groups are not allowed

In the event that a resident approaches the end of their life, the residence will make the decision it deems appropriate to take special measures for the family to visit them.

This will be applied at the discretion of each residence, which will still have to take into account social distancing.

This is in addition to the previous restrictions on prohibiting visits to

  • Those who have returned from abroad in the last 14 days
  • Those in contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19
  • Those who have not been vaccinated against influenza after May 1.

Visitors should not enter the centers. Limit visits to once a day. Death cases to decide for each residence how to proceed.

Stop compulsive shopping

The Prime Minister has made reference in the press conference to the compulsive behavior of people who go to supermarkets to make massive purchases of food and has assured that stocks are guaranteed.

Morrison has asked Australians for common sense. "Stop accumulating. It is one of the most disappointing things I have seen in Australia. There is no reason for people to do it.  

"Stop doing it is ridiculous and anti-Australian," he said.

It has also called for aggressive behavior against workers in supermarkets and health centers to stop.

"Don't abuse workers."


Morrison has also announced that all ANZAC Day ceremonies abroad have been canceled , including the Gallipoli ceremony in Turkey.

However, he explained that there will be a televised event in Canberra.

"ANZAC day events or ceremonies should be canceled due to the high proportion of Australians attending such events, but there will be a national event televised here in Canberra at the War Memorial. States and territories can also host one without public meetings. "

Australian authorities advise that only people who have recently traveled abroad or who have been in contact with a confirmed case and who have experienced symptoms within 14 days should be tested for COVID-19.

If you think you may have contracted COVID-19, call your doctor (do not visit him) or contact the national information line on the new Coronavirus (1800 020 080).

If you have difficulty breathing or have a medical emergency, call 000.


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The post about “Coronavirus: Government prohibits travel abroad and indoor non-essential" first appeared on the SBS Spanish website.

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