Reopening pubs could be a health cost saving for governments

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Back bar entertainment during Broadstairs Folk Week. (Image source: Wikimedia user Acabashi)

COVID-19 is causing a lot of uncertainty for Australians wanting to know when things will be normal again – and if they ever will. Uncertainty leads to depression and mental health experts have been warning that the current lockdown combined with unemployment could lead to a crisis.

One  economic analysis of the health costs versus the health benefits of reopening pubs sooner than later has fond that in favour of reopening quickly. It found that by keeping bars and restaurants closed the government is paying 250 times more than it would usually pay to gain a life year.

Another study argues the opposite – that deaths from COVID-19 would far exceed the estimated number of deaths from suicide and loneliness if a full reopening happened now.

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