Covid-19 lockdown payments of $600 and $375 to hit your bank account TODAY

Australians who lose work can get pandemic disaster payments of up to $600 within 40 minutes if they apply online, Scott Morrison said on Wednesday as he urged people to sign up for the cash relief.

The Prime Minister said $200million worth of support payments have already been paid to Australians across the country who have been unable to work.

Some 14million Australians are in lockdown in South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria over outbreaks of the highly contagious Delta strain of the disease. 

In a press conference on Wednesday, Mr Morrison starred at the camera and directly addressed Australians who are struggling to put food on the table.

He said the payments of $600 a week for people who lose more than 20 hours and $375 for people who lose 8-20 hours would continue as long as lockdowns last.

‘Those payments are going to turn up in your bank account and you can count on it,’ he said.

‘You don’t have to apply again. You done have to worry about it. There’s plenty of other things that I know you have to worry about, I don’t want you to have to worry about that. 

‘So the payments will keep turning up every week that the lockdowns continue to roll.’  

Mr Morrison also revealed he is ‘constantly appealing’ health experts to recommend the AstraZeneca vaccine to younger Australians. 

In April the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation said the vaccine was only recommended for over 50s because of a low risk of blood clots in younger people.

Sydney residents are only allowed to exercise in groups of two during lockdown. Pictured: Locals at Bronte Beach

In June the body increased that age to over 60s, denting confidence and delaying the jab rollout as the government scrambled to get more Pfizer into the country.

Anyone over 18 can get the AstraZeneca jab if they sign a consent form and Mr Morrison urged them to do so.

‘My message to Australians today is take the vaccines, please, that are available to you now. 

‘Discuss them with your doctor. That’s what has occurred in my family. [My wife] Jenny got her second dose last week of AstraZeneca. 

‘Both my mother and my mother-in-law – they’ve both done the same thing. I’d say the same thing to you that I say to my own family.’

Mr Morrison said he wanted ATAGI to change its advice to recommend the vaccine for younger people given the outbreaks.

‘It’s a constant appeal. I can assure you. It’s a constant appeal,’ he said. 

‘The situation in Australia faces should be managed on the balance of risk, as ATAGI has said to me in the past. 

‘When they made the decision to have a preference for those under the age ultimately of 60 to have the Pfizer vaccine, they said that they made that decision on the balance of risk. 

‘Well, it’s for them to now constantly reconsider how that balance of risk applies and provide their advice accordingly.’  

On July 11, ATAGI evaluated the changed risk and kept the age recommendation at 60.  

The Prime Minister said the ATAGI scientists were some of the best in the world and he has always followed their advice. 

He said a record 1million jabs had been administered in the past week, with 14.52 per cent of adults now fully vaccinated.  

On Wednesday NSW recorded 110 new cases of Covid-19, taking the state’s outbreak to 1,528. 

Earlier on Wednesday Mr Morrison suggested the percentage of Australians who need to be vaccinated to end coronavirus lockdowns is 65 to 70 per cent. 

In a radio interview on Wednesday morning, the Prime Minister said the stunted jab rollout – which has only vaccinated 14.52 per cent of over 16s – was not to blame for 14 million people being told to stay at home.

He said the country would always have needed harsh restrictions this winter because even if the rollout went perfectly not enough people would be jabbed. 

Sydneysiders queue up at the New South Wales Health mass vaccination hub in Homebush to get their jabs

Sydneysiders queue up at the New South Wales Health mass vaccination hub in Homebush to get their jabs

Asked if lockdowns were the result of his government getting the jab rollout ‘wrong’, he said: ‘No, I don’t accept that. No, I’m sorry, I don’t accept that.

‘Under no plan, was there any plan that said we’d be at 65-70 per cent vaccination rates in this country,’ he told FiveAA radio in Adelaide. 

‘Australia was always going to be in the suppression phase this year.’ 

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has said 80 per cent of the population or 62 per cent of adults needed to be jabbed before she can stop resorting to lockdowns in her state.

Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan has said the rate required is ‘at least’ 80 per cent and possibly 90 per cent. 

Mr Morrison insisted the Delta variant, not the slow rollout, was responsible for crippling lockdowns across the nation. 

‘The virus writes the rules. Delta strain is is what has impacted New South Wales, Victoria and sadly now South Australia,’ he said.

‘We need to use the tools that we have to try and suppress that to protect people’s health and try to preserve our economy. So, that continues.’ 

Australia is now bringing in one million Pfizer doses per week. Under 40s are expected to become eligible for the jab in late September. Pictured: The Sydney Homebush vaccination hub

Australia is now bringing in one million Pfizer doses per week. Under 40s are expected to become eligible for the jab in late September. Pictured: The Sydney Homebush vaccination hub

Earlier this month Mr Morrison announced a four stage plan to get Australia back to normal, with each step to be triggered when the vaccination rate hits a certain percentage.

In the next phase, expected early next year, lockdowns will not be needed but international arrival caps will remain in place. 

The vaccination percentages required are being calculated by modelling experts at The Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity and will be released by the end of July.

The United Kingdom on Monday removed all Covid restrictions with about 66 per cent of the population fully vaccinated. The nation suffered 46,558 cases and 96 deaths on Tuesday. 

Asked if Australia would need to more than 65 per cent jabbed before opening up, Mr Morrison said: ‘Well, we’ll wait to see what the scientific evidence is on this. We’ll match that with the economic advice we get through the various treasuries and, of course, our Federal Treasury. 

‘And, we’ll also look at the health system capacity, because that’s another important factor. Because, when you’re looking at managing hospitalisations and things of that nature, you look at the strength of your hospital system.’ 

Mr Morrison admitted 'we haven't got everything right' over the vaccine rollout. Pictured: Residents in lockdown at Bondi Beach

Mr Morrison admitted ‘we haven’t got everything right’ over the vaccine rollout. Pictured: Residents in lockdown at Bondi Beach

How to claim the $600 lockdown payment if you lose work 

Sydney residents who lose more than 20 hours of work a week can claim a $600 disaster payment from the federal government, and those who lose less than 20 hours can claim $375. 

To claim the cash you’ll need a Centrelink online account linked to your myGov. It’s easy to set these up.

Once you’re logged in, you will be asked a few questions about your situation to see if you’re eligible.

Officials need to know if you lived or worked in a Covid-19 hotspot that’s under lockdown or restricted movement.

Once you’ve completed your claim, hit submit and officials will process it for you.

You don’t need to call them, they’ll send you an SMS when you successfully submit your claim.

If you are eligible, officials will make a payment into your bank account and send you a letter with the details.

For more information click here