Coronavirus Australia latest: the week at a glance

By Naaman Zhou

Here are all the latest developments in the coronavirus pandemic in Australia. This is Naaman Zhou and it’s Friday 2 October.

Aged care ‘insufficiently’ prepared for Covid-19

The aged care royal commission released its special report into Covid-19 on Thursday, finding that the aged care sector was “insufficiently” prepared for the pandemic. It recommended the government should publish a detailed national aged care plan for Covid-19 and deploy infection control experts into nursing homes.

On Tuesday, the former chief medical officer Prof Brendan Murphy said a more “prompt” response could have prevented some of Victoria’s aged care deaths, and a Senate inquiry also revealed that more than 10,000 people died while on the aged care waiting list for home care, including pre-Covid.

The aged care minister, Richard Colbeck, said the government would accept all the recommendations in the royal commission report.

Trans-Tasman travel bubble agreed

Part of the long-awaited trans-Tasman travel bubble was finally confirmed on Friday, when the government announced that New Zealanders would be able to travel to Australia from as early as 16 October without going into quarantine.

But the deputy prime minister, Michael McCormack, said Kiwis would only be able to travel to New South Wales and the Northern Territory at the moment, although South Australia was expected to come on board. Australians are still not allowed to travel to New Zealand and Kiwis will need to quarantine for 14 days when returning home.

WA and Tasmanian borders relaxed

Western Australia announced a slight easing of its border restrictions on Tuesday, meaning that NSW residents would be treated like those of other states, and Victorians could enter the state and also quarantine at home rather than in a hotel.

Tasmania announced it would open borders to ‘safe and low risk’ jurisdictions from 26 October, which applies to SA, Queensland, WA, the ACT and the NT. The premier, Peter Gutwein, said NSW was under consideration, depending on case numbers.

Seven days without community transmission in NSW

NSW went seven days in a row without a new case of community transmission, as case numbers also fell further in Victoria. NSW recorded 12 new cases of Covid-19 since last Friday, who were all returned Australians in quarantine.

In Victoria, Monday brought the first day of single digits in the new case count, and by Friday, the 14-day average fell to 12.8.

Jobkeeper drops but jobseeker rate could be extended

The government’s changes to jobkeeper came into effect on Monday, cutting the full-time rate from $1,500 to $1,200 a fortnight and the part-time rate to $750.

Also on Monday, the federal social services minister, Anne Ruston, said that the current rate of jobseeker could be extended into 2021 “if required” and if unemployment remained high.

Home quarantine on the cards

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, hinted on Tuesday that home quarantine could be used instead of hotel quarantine for returning Australians in the future. He told reporters that it was being looked at by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee and that home quarantine “can play a role in the future”.

Workers should ‘get back to office’

The PM also said that workers should “get back to the office” if safe, in states that were not Victoria, after the public service had already announced that it would reopen offices.

What you need to know: get the most important information from some of our key explainers

Looking for more coverage? Read the latest news from across the Guardian’s global network