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COVID has made grieving more complex

Source: Digital Vision

So far, almost 1,950 people have died in Australia with coronavirus since the onset of the pandemic. It's important for people to realise that navigating their way through grief under these circumstances is going to be more complex.

Melbourne woman Calista Stuttard's mother, Donna, died with COVID-19 in an aged care home in Canada in November last year.

With Australia's travel ban in place, which required people to obtain exemptions to leave the country, Ms Stuttard was forced to watch her mother's funeral over Zoom.

"It was my worst fear to lose my mum while overseas but it was another with that drawn impact of I can't even get on a plane and go to a funeral. It was literally, you know, I sat on my partner's lap and watched a Zoom video of my mother's funeral and it was just, it was a nightmare."

It was recently revealed the chief health officer in New South Wales recommended Sydney impose a strict lockdown in an email she sent on the 13th of July. 

Dr Kerry Chant's recommendation was based on modelling from the Burnet Institute that concluded a Victoria-style, stage 4 lockdown offered the state the best chance to contain the outbreak which started in mid-June.

Professor Michael Toole says he's surprised that level of accountability isn't being demanded of the New South Wales government.

"We're having a coronial inquest into the deaths of 50 elderly people in an aged care home last year, St Basils, and yet we're kind of not noticing that more than 1,000 have died since mid-June from a preventable disease. I don't quite understand it. I guess we're just so focused on the positive at the moment, the increase in vaccination and the lifting of restrictions, that we're choosing not to acknowledge the grief that must be gripping so many families and so many of these deaths are in people in their 40s, 50s and 60s."

Click on the player at the top of the page to listen to the feature in Punjabi.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at https://www.sbs.com.au/language/coronavirus

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