Relatives demand better care at coronavirus-hit home

Relatives today gathered at the Sydney aged care home at the centre of a coronavirus outbreak to protest for better care for their loved ones.

Relatives demand better care at coronavirus-hit  home

Relatives today gathered at the Sydney aged care home at the centre of a coronavirus outbreak to protest for better care for their loved ones.

Anthony Bowe said "everyone has got their own horror stories" from Anglicare Newmarch House in Penrith, which reported a third death yesterday evening.

He said his mother had a fall but was still in bed with blood on her sheets as there is no laundry service available.

"They patched her up, they didn't do a good job," he said.

Louise Payne said she worried for her mother in the home.

"I said to my mother on the 22nd of March, 'Mum you're in the safest place in Australia', and now I feel she was in the most dangerous place," Ms Payne told 9News.

Anglicare CEO Grant Millard could only say sorry.

"The basics are being done but, you know, like in a battle, you have to say it's not all that pretty all the time," Mr Millard said.

In a space of ten days, the aged care facility has registered 42 cases of COVID-19, second only to the Ruby Princess.

A total of 28 residents and 14 staff have been diagnosed.

Three residents have died and 55 workers - more than half the staff - have been forced into isolation.

Mary Watson said her mother had been locked in her bedroom for over a week and had missed meals.

"I don't think she has had any kind of basic nursing care at all because they are all so busy," she said.

The government said it has offered "unlimited" workforce support for the home, and deployed an emergency response team.

Another two deaths confirmed today take the NSW death toll to 31, and the COVID-19 pandemic is now responsible for killing 74 across the country.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian today said Newmarch House underlined the "devastating consequences" of the virus in an aged care facility.

Workers and visitors had to be "especially vigilant" for symptoms, she said.

The premier detailed the balance between even tighter social restrictions on aged care facilities and visits by family.

Graph showing the cluster outbreaks, deaths and infections at Newmarch House aged-care facility in Sydney's west.

It would be "unthinkable" to suggest loved ones could not have access to parents and grandparents, she said.

She called on workers and visitors to be "especially vigilant" for the "mildest, mildest symptoms" when they are in contact with residents.

Ms Berejiklian urged young children who could not maintain safe social distancing to stay away from aged care facilities.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said aged care facilities had unique health challenges, as the elderly do not always show a lot of COVID-19 symptoms.

Five new cases were reported in NSW overnight. There are 20 people in intensive care units, with 16 on ventilators.

Yesterday more than 4200 people were tested for the virus, and a plan for more widespread testing is expected to be rolled out soon.

It is likely to include those with only mild symptoms.

READ MORE:

Scaled back ANZAC Day commemorations 

Ms Berejiklian said this year would be "a very different" ANZAC Day but that even in isolation people could still "really, really soak up the significance" of the day.

A Dawn Service in Canberra will be televised, and there will be a live stream from a NSW location at 10am.

"We can't turn up to the dawn service, we can't turn up to marches, we can't turn up to those regular things we do," Ms Berejiklian said.

"But what we can do is still honour our servicemen and women, past and present.

"We can still acknowledge those in our family who have served and of course support the RSL in their efforts in making sure everybody appreciates the significance of Anzac Day this year."

READ MORE:

How to commemorate Anzac Day during the coronavirus pandemic

Ruby Princess departure still on

Almost 300 Filipino crew could be whisked off the infected Ruby Princess cruise before its scheduled departure from Australian waters tomorrow.

NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller confirmed the Ruby Princess captain is healthy and will set sail with the stricken ship.

Yesterday, 57 crew were plucked from the boat to fly home.

Do you know more? Email msaunoko@nine.com.au

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Source : 9 News More   

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PM talks with Trump, Merkel, Macron about virus fallout, WHO future

Scott Morrison has spoken with global leaders about the need for political transparency and improvements for global institutions such as WHO in their response to pandemics.

PM talks with Trump, Merkel, Macron about virus fallout, WHO future

The prime minister has spoken to Donald Trump about the economic impacts of coronavirus and the performance of the World Health Organisation.

Scott Morrison and the US president on Wednesday discussed the need for transparency, in a clear reference to China, and the need to improve global institutions such as WHO in their response to pandemics.

Mr Morrison raised Australia's focus on supporting countries in the Pacific and Southeast Asia, where the United States also holds a keen strategic interest.

He also spoke about the role of the WHO with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron.

Mr Morrison has been scathing of the United Nations agency for its handling of COVID-19 after it criticised Australia for closing its borders to Chinese tourists and took two weeks longer to declare a pandemic.

He has also challenged its decision to support China reopening wet markets, which were the likely cause of the deadly disease.

Asked if the WHO should have the power to compulsorily enter countries at a time like the present, Mr Morrison said world organisations need to be able operate without being "fettered in any way".

There is a clear view among other leaders that a transparent and independent process is needed to examine what has happened and what needs to change, Mr Morrison told Sky News on Wednesday.

"One of the things that would have been very helpful to the rest of the world is if there wasn't any delay and if there was the ability to get this information very early on - that could have alerted the rest of the world to the greater risk that was occurring there. It did take a while," Mr Morrison said.

"It would be very helpful... that if there is a virus of this nature that is believed to be of pandemic potential and very dangerous to the world, well, we need to know what's going on and very fast.

"If we have that ability that could potentially save thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of lives, and we need to have that sort of ability and so that's why I am an advocate of that case."

Global organisations have to be able to continue their good work without being "fettered in any way in the way they find out what's going on so the rest of us can take action".

The prime minister discussed co-operation on repatriating stranded citizens with Ms Merkel and the pair also talked about negotiations on a free trade deal between Australia and the European Union.

He and Mr Macron discussed the need for greater international co-operation in response to pandemics, including on developing a coronavirus vaccine.

Labor leader Anthony Albanese said he hoped Mr Morrison raised with Mr Trump Australia's concerns with the US withdrawing funding from the WHO.

"The decision by the United States to withdraw funding is a very short-sighted decision indeed," Mr Albanese told ABC television.

"It isn't in Australia's interest and it's not in the world's interests to undermine the World Health Organisation."

He said the WHO should be given unfettered access to records in order to get to the bottom of how the pandemic occurred and ensure it cannot happen again.

For breaking news alerts and livestreams straight to your smartphone sign up to the and set notifications to on at the or

You can also get up-to-date information from the Federal Government's Coronavirus Australia app, available on the , and the .

Source : 9 News More   

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