Djokovic’s deportation ‘not a surprise’

Australian Catholic University’s Law and Public Policy Professor Patrick Keyzer says he is not surprised by the decision to deport Novak Djokovic.

“The minister’s powers are very wide indeed,” Profesor Keyzer told Sky News Australia.

“And really, not much of an opportunity for Djokovic’s lawyers to advance any arguments.”

‘Beyond outrageous’: ACCC on the hunt for RAT pricing explanations

ACCC Chair Rod Sims says the consumer watchdog has received “extremely concerning” reports of excessive pricing for rapid antigen tests and is asking stores to explain their reasoning.

“Many of the reports are between $20 and $30 which is concerning,” Mr Sims said on Monday.

“We’ve had a number of reports well above $30 which, of course, is just beyond outrageous.

“The wholesale prices we’re hearing about are anywhere between $3.95 and say $7-8 – sometimes those prices go up to $11.45 – but you can see when the bulk of the wholesale pricing is between say $4 and $8 that the pricing between $20 and $30 is extremely concerning, and as I say above $30 just beyond outrageous.”

“We have already written out to a range of chains to get them to explain their pricing, and we’re also writing out to individual stores to get them to explain their pricing.”

‘We’re exhausted’: Sydney lung specialist paints grim picture of COVID hospitals

Hospitalisations in New South Wales and Victoria continue to grow day-on-day with more than 100 residents admitted to hospital over the space of a 24-hour period.
There are 338,613 active COVID cases in NSW and 2,776 people currently in hospital receiving care with 95 per cent of infections in the past two days identified as the Omicron variant.
Dr Morgan said while hospital staff are well equipped and experienced with handling coronavirus after two years of the pandemic, there were significant strains put on the system due to soaring cases.
“New South Wales hospital staff have got two years of experience with managing the challenges of COVID-19, we’ve got really remarkably sophisticated treatments for COVID-19 now,” Dr Morgan said.
‘Wake up to yourselves’: Hazzard berates ‘disbelievers’ who won’t get COVID jab
“We’ve got extraordinary vaccine programs and we’ve got one of the most vaccinated populations in the world.
“But we are exhausted.”
Dr Morgan said there were “thousands of patients” presenting to hospitals every day which has severely affected staff’s capacity to “manage everything else”.
“In the short-term, that’s OK,” she said. “But in the long-term, and it’s two years now, this is bad.”
“It’s really hard on us and it’s really hard on the people of New South Wales because this is leading to some delayed diagnosis some longer waiting times for everything and a huge burden on our community as we try to keep everything ticking over.
“This is why every little thing that we can do to reduce the incident of severe disease from COVID makes just such a difference.”
Victorian hospital standards under fire
Omicron has been identified as a milder COVID variant than its predecessor Delta, however mass infections due to its extreme virulence has placed significant pressure on hospitals despite its relatively less severe symptoms.
Dr Morgan said vaccine rollout was therefore critical in reducing hospitalisations as the vast amount of people presenting to hospital were the most vulnerable and those who were not fully vaccinated.
“This made an enormous difference to the people of New South Wales. We saved lots of lives,” Dr Morgan said.
“Omicron, as a variant of the COVID-19 virus, has the potential to cause very severe illness, just like Delta. Proportionally, most people do not get as sick. But it is so much more contagious than the Delta variant, the sheer number of people who get COVID is enormous in comparison.
“I think in the last 24 hours, and I’ve been on call for the 24 hours, there were more than 2,500 patients admitted to hospital.”
NSW health authorities confident COVID cases will soon peak
Dr Morgan said despite the readiness of the health system and the high vaccination rate, hospitals were still facing capacity concerns due to the remaining unvaccinated and growing staff shortages.
“There are still people who are incompletely vaccinated. So those peopling some of whom have not had any vaccinations at all. Some of whom are yet to get through their three doses,” she said.
“I think yesterday, there were 6,000 staff members in the state unable to work. We’re doing the best we can. We’re going to keep doing the best we can.
“But Omicron is still a potentially very severe virus and if we’re going to keep going, we really, really need to do everything we can as individuals to keep our hospitals ticking over.”

Watchdog to crack down over ‘beyond outrageous’ $500 RAT tests

ACCC Chair Rod Sims says the watchdog has received reports of retailers charging between $20 and $30 per test with wholesale prices between $3.95 and $11.45.
Mr Sims said at the “extreme end”, there were reports of two tests costing up to $500 through online marketplaces, and $70 per test through convenience stores, service stations and independent supermarkets.
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Metro Petroleum Randwick selling single RATs for $30 each. Picture: Getty Images / Supplied
“The wholesale prices we are hearing about are anywhere between $3.95, and sometimes those prices go up to $11.45,” he told reporters on Monday.
“Pricing between $20 and $30 is extremely concerning, and as I say, above $30 – just beyond outrageous.”
The consumer watchdog has contacted a range of retailers seeking information about their costs, current pricing and stock availability.
There have been numerous reports of single tests being sold at $30 or above from a number of King of the Pack and Metro Petroleum stores (70 and 40 complaints respectively).
ACCC Chair Rod Sims says the watchdog won’t hesitate to “take action”. Picture: Getty Images / News Corp
“There are several businesses that have repeatedly come to our notice thanks to the information provided by the public. We are asking those businesses to urgently explain the prices they are charging,” Mr Sims said.
“Some individual stores within chains are pricing at very high levels and we have a large number of reports of them doing so, and so we are very much looking forward to what their explanations are.
“Often some of these high prices are from stores you would not expect, petrol retailers, tobacconists, some convenience stores, so we are very much looking at those as well as pharmacies.”
Mr Sims warns penalties under the Australian Consumer Law can be high, especially for larger stores and supply chains.
“We won’t hesitate to take action and the penalties will be very large,” he said.
“Where it is individual stores we still may take action but they are of such a size that the penalties will be very painful for them, but they will be of a lower level.”
Website ‘Find a RAT’ helping Australians find COVID tests
Earlier this month, the government introduced measures under the Biosecurity Act 2015 to prohibit a mark-up of more than 20 per cent on rapid antigen tests.
“These measures will prevent people who have purchased RAT’s at retail settings to on-sell them at extortionate prices, which is assessed at more than 120 per cent more than the price for which they were purchased,” Health Minister Greg Hunt said in a statement.
“People found to be engaged in price gouging or unlawfully exporting RAT kits will be required to surrender those kits to law enforcement agencies or Customs officials for destruction or redistribution to the National Medical Stockpile as appropriate.”
Penalties for failing to comply with the requirements include up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $66,600, or both.

Kristina Keneally ‘not fussed’ about Novak Djokovic

Shadow Immigration Minister Kristina Keneally says she is “not fussed” about what the Morrison government does with Novak Djokovic over his three-year “exclusion” from Australia.

Ms Keneally told Sky News Australia Mr Djokovic never should have been given a visa.

Her remarks come after Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews confirmed Mr Djokovic was now excluded from Australia for three years unless “compelling circumstances” change his situation.

“Mr Djokovic is now subject to a three-year exclusion – it can be waived in compelling circumstances but that’s not a matter for today or tomorrow that’s a matter for some time in the future,” Ms Andrews said on Monday morning.

Mr Djokovic was deported from Australia after failing to overturn Immigration Minister Alex Hawke’s decision to cancel his visa.

President Biden is ‘hanging by a thread’

President Joe Biden is “hanging by a thread” as the first anniversary of his administration nears, according to political analyst Professor Joe Siracusa.

Professor Siracusa said President Biden is having problems with a number of issues – namely inflation and his own opinion polling in the country.

“Everyone’s worried about the economy and inflation,” Professor Siracusa told Sky News Australia.

“Biden is in a very bad space.”

New poll shows half of America is ‘frustrated’ with Biden

More than half the respondents of a new CBS poll say they are “frustrated” with the president – just days before Joe Biden will mark his one year anniversary in the White House.

When asked how Biden’s presidency made them feel, half of respondents in the CBS poll said they were “frustrated” and “disappointed.”

A majority of voters say the Biden administration is not paying enough attention to the issues that matter – which is the economy and inflation.

‘Give a damn about someone other than yourself’: NSW Health Minister blasts the unvaxxed

Mr Hazzard made the comments during a COVID-19 update press conference on Monday, pointing out the pressure unvaccinated people are placing on “exhausted” hospital staff.
“The latest data from NSW Health shows that in this Omicron wave, if you are not fully vaccinated, you are six times more likely to end up in hospital and 13 times more likely to end up in ICU,” he said.
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Unvaccinated putting health workers ‘at risk’: Hazzard
“That means you are requiring the assistance of the health staff who are already exhausted,” he said.
Mr Hazzard also said those who had chosen to remain unvaccinated were placing themselves over the community.
“Can I just say to those people who have chosen not to get vaccinated – it’s time to give a damn about someone other than yourself.
“Give a damn about your community, your family and most particularly, the health staff across New South Wales who you expect to be looking after you, if and when, you end up in our hospital system. Thank you.”
Rising pressure on NSW paramedics 
NSW recorded 29,504 positive tests, 2776 hospitalisations – including 203 in ICU – and 17 deaths in the latest reporting period on Monday.
Dr Lucy Morgan, a lung specialist, also spoke at the press conference about the strain being placed on the hospital system by the almost two-year long pandemic.
“We are exhausted. And in responding to the unprecedented demands, the thousands of patients presenting to our hospitals every day, our capacity to manage everything else has also really changed.
“In the short-term, that’s okay.
“But in the long-term, and it’s two years now, this is bad.
“It’s really hard on us and it’s really hard on the people of New South Wales because this is leading to some delayed diagnosis, some longer waiting times for everything and a huge burden on our community as we try to keep everything ticking over,” she said.
‘Wake up to yourselves’: Hazzard berates ‘disbelievers’ who won’t get COVID jab
Dr Morgan emphasised the importance of the vaccine program in keeping people out of NSW’s hospitals.
“This made an enormous difference to the people of New South Wales. We saved lots of lives
“That was the most important thing we could do for each other at that time. And we, as a community, were protected from the severe illness that COVID, the Delta variant caused.”
However, she pointed out that the Omicron variant could still cause “severe illness” especially among unvaccinated people.
“Omicron, as a variant of the COVID-19 virus, has the potential to cause very severe illness, just like Delta.
“And those at particular risk of getting very sick from Omicron are the same group who were at risk from Delta. Those who are incompletely vaccinated, those with underlying health complaints or conditions and those who are frail,” she said.