Live updates: COVID-19 isolation rules scrapped; Australia 'doing everything we can' to get jailed economist home; US warned of heavy death toll from Hurricane Ian – 9News

Welcome to the 9News.com.au live blog for Friday, September 30, 2022. National cabinet has scrapped nearly all of the COVID-19 isolation rules. The almost 10 million Optus customers impacted by a major cyberhack are warned today to stay on alert for a slew of new scams. Police are hunting a gunman in Perth today after a man was shot dead in a suspected gang-related killing. And overseas US President Joe Biden has told Americans to expect a major death toll after Hurricane Ian slammed into Florida.
COVID-19 isolation rules axed
AFP launches operation into Optus hack
Suspect arrested over shooting death of Australian personal trainer in LA
Police hunt Perth gunman after gang-related killing
Hurricane Ian 'crushed us': Biden declares major disaster, warns of death toll
We'll wrap up the 9news.com.au live blog for Friday, September 30, 2022, now.
Here's what happened today.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese confirmed that mandatory COVID-19 isolation would end from October 14, along with leave support payments.
Optus will cover the costs of a new passport for people who have to get theirs replaced following last week's massive data breach.
NATO has labelled the Baltic Sea leaks in Russia's Nord Stream Two gas pipeline an act of sabotage.
Australia Post is looking to swell its ranks after putting the call out for a staggering 6000 jobs to be filled.
And the husband of Melissa Caddick has told an inquest into her disappearance that he accepts she was a fraudster who stole millions from family and friends.
We'll be back on Monday to take you through the day's breaking news.
Until then visit nine.com.au and 9news.com.au or download the 9news app – and have a great weekend.
China's famous "Panda diplomacy" faces a test after a bear in Taiwan came down with a life-threatening brain lesion.
Taipei Zoo told CNN they had requested help from experts in China to treat their giant panda, Tuan Tuan, after an MRI scan revealed the damage.
They are hoping for support in treating Tuan Tuan after he began behaving abnormally, lost his appetite and suffered a three-minute seizure in late August.
Read all about it here.
A crime scene has been established on a Darwin beach after skeletal remains were found there on Wednesday afternoon.
A "large number of bones", including a skull, have been recovered by Northern Territory Police on Lee Point Beach.
Detective Acting Superintendent Karl Day said the bones were discovered by a bushwalker around lunchtime on Wednesday and police were notified soon after.
Stay up to date on this story here.
Here's the full update into the findings of an investigation into Mackay Base Hospital in Queensland.
It makes for grim reading.
Substandard and inadequate care led to the deaths of three infants and left women with lifelong physical and emotional injuries after being treated at the hospital, the damning report found.
Health Minister Yvette D'Ath nearly broke down in tears as she revealed the findings of an investigation into Mackay Base Hospital's obstetrics and gynaecology services.
"No family should ever have to experience the devastating loss of a child and certainly not under these circumstances," she said.
Read the full story here.
A drunk ambulance officer banged on a neighbour's door and searched the premises for his wife late on the night she disappeared 40 years ago, his murder trial has been told.
John Douglas Bowie returned a second time when he shared a few beers with Eddie Ovens, his partner Ruth Ovens told police.
"He didn't seem to be very worried about it or distraught," she said in her record of interview read out to the NSW Supreme Court jury today.
Bowie, 72, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Roxlyn Bowie, who was 31 when she vanished from their Walgett home in northern NSW.
The couple are pictured above.
You can read more about today's update on the case here.
A viral disease has killed nearly 100,000 cows and buffaloes in India and sickened over 2 million more.
The outbreak has triggered devastating income losses for cattle farmers since the disease not only results in deaths but can also lead to decreased milk production, emaciated animals, and birth issues.
The disease, called lumpy skin disease, is spread by insects that drink blood like mosquitoes and ticks. Infected cows and buffaloes get fevers and develop lumps on their skin.
Read the full story
The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation has expressed their concern about COVID-19 isolation rules being scrapped.
ANMF Federal Assistant Secretary, Lori-Anne Sharp said the move would place further pressure on the health system.
"We believe the suggestion that COVID-isolation is a matter of 'personal responsibility' is just a way of Governments shifting their responsibility onto the individual when it should be theirs," she said.
"ANMF members have been on the frontline of healthcare and aged care throughout the pandemic and we're concerned that we will now be relying on people to stay at home when they test positive."
She noted the impact of reducing the isolation period from seven days to five days still was not apparent.
"While we all want the pandemic to end, the sad reality is COVID is not over," Sharp said.
"We must continue to do all we can to prevent further pressure on our healthcare system and the precious nurses, midwives and carers who hold it together."
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