22 September 2021
At last! A government that does the sensible thing. The Victorian government will only open up if people are vaccinated. Thanks to NSW the Delta variant genie is out of the bottle and spreading nationwide. Business wants to unlock, some with no care for anyone but themselves.
Victoria wants to unlock but minimise spread among those now having more interpersonal contacts. The R (Reproduction) number is the number of cases each case infects. If everyone is vaccinated, less people will get it and those who have it will get it to less people.
Reasonable medical opinion is that the risks of vaccine are massively less than the risks of getting COVID, so the case against vaccination is incredibly weak on medical grounds. The ‘right not to have your body violated’ etc sounds very dramatic, and makes vaccination equivalent to rape in a semantic sense. But in a practical sense the two concepts are as far apart as could be. One is sensible medicine and the other is a crime.
Anyone who thinks that this does not matter should look at the graph of NSW cases that has peaked and is just starting to fall. Anything that can flatten the curve or make it fall is good. Anything that makes it rise is creating deaths and misery.
I am a member of the Council for Civil Liberties and have spent years working against excess government power. But sometimes it is necessary to act for the common good. I have no time for smokers’ rights or the right to spread disease. The Morrison government is as usual missing in action when real leadership is needed. ‘Let every workplace decide’, is a nightmare for retail business owners, offices and just about every other employer. Gladys is similarly missing. Dan Andrews has stepped up, despite a motley crew in the streets spreading disease and demanding the right to continue to do so.
What of the Health System? We are going the way of the Americans by stealth, and the fact that the public system is what has helped us survive is being glossed over, hidden by subsidies to private hospitals. The Federal government has been quietly trying to kill public medicine for years. The Medicare rebate has fallen from 85% of the AMA rate to 45%, so for the same bulk-billing work doctors incomes have almost halved over 35 years, while subsidies to the inefficient Private Health Insurers continue. Being a GP is now a little-sought speciality. (I have a FB page- Fix Medicare that I spend too little time on).
The States have maintained the public hospitals at a minimal level, as all the lucrative work has been siphoned off by the private system basically doing the easy stuff. There is No slack in the system, not that counting the number of ICU beds should factor. All our efforts should be to keep people out of Hospital and ICU by prevention of infection.
Have a look at this article on the anti-discrimination aspects of mandatory vaccination, and also look at the NSW cases, just turning down, but likely to rise if anything, like opening up from lockdown, tips the balance.