Australian Doctors Write Letter To Premier Andrews Pleading For Restrictions To End
Thirteen doctors have written a letter to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews asking for Stage 4 restrictions to end in Melbourne.
The lockdown was introduced on August 2 to prevent the spread of the coronavirus after the state experienced a devastating second wave of infections.
The end of those restrictions is scheduled for September 13, however the Premier may choose, based off the health advice, to keep them going to ensure people stay safe. But, he's been sent a letter from more than a dozen top doctors who are pleading for Premier Andrews to stick to that date.
"It is our professional opinion that the stage 4 lockdown policy has caused unprecedented negative economic and social outcomes in people, which in themselves are having negative health outcomes," the letter said.
The doctors, which make up a range of specialities including urologists, psychiatrists and surgeons, say many people haven't received specialist referrals because they fear they will get sick if they go outside.
"As a direct consequence of this delay, many will have poorer prognoses. This has especially been the case with three consultants who treat cancer," they wrote.
"We now know that whilst COVID-19 is highly contagious, it is of limited virulence."
More Like ThisMore Like This
"We are told that since March 2020, 565 Victorian patients have died either with or from the virus (31st August numbers). This compares with annual Victorian deaths of approximately 10,000 patients with cardiovascular disease and 11,000 with cancer.
"Accordingly, the COVID-19 deaths are a relatively small proportion of the 114 deaths per day that are normally seen in Victoria. In comparison, since the start of March COVID-19 has been associated with 3 of the 114 deaths per day.
"Most of the 565 deaths have occurred in nursing homes which according to doctors currently working in this environment have described causal factors related not only to the virus but to other care related issues, including isolation, loneliness, and related diminished nutritional intake."
They are hoping the Victorian government will listen to these outcries and not extend restrictions beyond the September 13 date.
That decision, however, will solely rest on what the numbers provide. If the coronavirus second wave hasn't abated, then it's unlikely the doors of every pub, restaurant and shop will fly open.
It will likely be a slow and measured reopening of the state, with leaders wading into the new rules very cautiously after so many people became sick during the past few months.
Featured Image Credit: PA