The city of Melbourne has been under strict Covid-19 restrictions for over 200 days, builders have taken to the streets in protest of working conditions, and yesterday the renowned Chapel street saw buildings shattered by a magnitude 6 earthquake.
“In Melbourne, things are getting worse as our wards fill up. More hospitals have come on board to assist with Covid patients. It is quite scary to see ICU beds filling faster than the first wave” Dr Amran Dhillon explained.
At 9:15 AM yesterday Melbourne residents were shocked as the ground shook with the ripples of a magnitude 6 earthquake. Geosciences Australia said the earthquake was recorded near Mansfield, about 180 kilometres north-east of Melbourne, at a depth of 10 kilometres.
There are multiple reports of damage and destruction across Melbourne including in the suburbs of Kensington, Ascot Vale, Parkdale, Prahran, Balwyn, Elsternwick, Northcote, and West Melbourne.
“Sadly, I think the earthquake best describes the past week,” said, Dr Dhillon. “There has been a lot of controversy regarding opening up and the recent protests with the construction industry have sparked further debate.”
As Melbourne reaches over 200 days of lockdown restrictions, including masks outdoors and indoors, and a ban on home visits, vaccination seems like the only way out, yet some residents are not taking kindly to the government’s mandatory vaccine ruling.
Protesters began to take to the streets last week when construction workers were told they could not have breaks in tea rooms anymore due to the risk of spreading Covid-19. Getting vaccinated was then made mandatory for the building industry, which resulted in another protest at the CFMEU office, this one turned violent.
Dr Dhillon describes a city divided “responses to the vaccine are mixed. Thankfully more are coming forward. I've been working hard on my social platforms to educate regarding the virus. A different tactic to the government which has been focused on "the jab". I think people have forgotten that this is a virus that causes severe pneumonia and can affect all ages.
Whilst the builders protest the vaccination, as frontline workers witness ICU beds filling up knowing that they have had a double jab sets their minds at rest.
“The frontline is undergoing the usual routine. Redeployment of staff. Getting Covid wards ready. Making a plan for opening up more ICU beds. Melbourne has been through it before but this time nearly all our healthcare workers are double-dosed vaccinated so that helps us feel safer.”
Earthquakes, riots, and a Covid ravaged city has left residents and frontline workers exhausted. “Honestly, I think people have run out of ideas. They are fed up and they are tired. There is a certain limit one can cope with and we knew this. I call it "lockdown fatigue". The vaccine rollout could have been better whatever way you put it’ said Dr Dhillon.
At Medworld, our thoughts are with Dr Dhillon and all the other frontline workers and Melbourne residents working together to get through this.
Stay home, stay safe, do your bit for your community and get vaccinated. Let’s get better together.