COVID is tearing through the population, filling our hospitals and overwhelming our ambulance services. Elective surgeries in Victoria and New South Wales have been cancelled, and emergency waiting rooms are overflowing, leaving even non-COVID patients waiting dangerously long times to be treated.
More than 3 million people have already died in the coronavirus pandemic, and more than 12,000 people continue to die every day across the world. Despite all the talk about “COVID-normal” or the “post-pandemic normal”, and despite vaccines progressively being rolled out, globally, we are “approaching the highest rate of infection that we have seen so far during the pandemic”, World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on 16 April.
We need the complete nationalisation of health care, taking the whole system back into public hands. This might seem radical, but the pandemic has shown both how irrational for-profit health care is, and how easy it would be to change it.
The state of Australia’s aged care sector is worsening every day, with overstretched staff forced to work harder and faster than ever before, inadequate training and stagnant wages. Residents’ expectations of what living in an aged care home should be are constantly being lowered. All the while, profits are tidy and the industry is booming.
Mass demonstrations and riots by the far right in the German city of Chemnitz in August have sent shockwaves around the world. Scenes of thousands of protesters, many giving Nazi salutes, marching through the historic city attacking people of colour and clashing with counter protesters have been seen by millions.
The crisis of funding in Australia’s aged care sector is resulting in a sharp deterioration in living and working conditions.