On Tuesday, there were 90,847 new cases reported in Australia, according to covidlive.com.au, though the real number in the community could be much higher owing to strain on the testing system. That’s 33 times higher than the 2,752 cases reported at the peak of the delta wave on Oct. 14, 2021.
Australia’s Covid case numbers keep to surge yet deaths and hospitalization rates are acquiring gaining much more leisurely than generally infections, as omicron turns into the dominant variant. Omicron addresses around 90% of cases in New South Wales state, Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant told columnists Wednesday, the rest of delta variant. Omicron is currently responsible for around 67% of Covid-19 cases in serious care units across the state, she said.
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Still, there were 27 deaths reported Tuesday, the same number as the deadliest day of the delta wave, Oct. 28, 2021, according to covidlive.com.au. And there were 3,869 people hospitalized, compared with 1,551 on Sept. 28, the highest recording during the delta surge.
Australia’s two most populous states reported 21 deaths apiece Wednesday, though seven of the deaths reported in NSW were historic. The country has reported 2,458 deaths overall during the pandemic.
There are 2,242 Covid cases in NSW hospitals, a 50% increase from a week ago, with 175 in intensive care, the government said Wednesday. More than half of those in ICU are unvaccinated, Premier Dominic Perrottet said. The state has a 94% vaccination rate for people aged 16 and over, with more than 20% of eligible people also having received a booster shot.
Vaccination is “key over this period of time in keeping you and your friends and your family safe,” Perrottet said. “It is very clear on those numbers. They do not lie.”
Victoria state has 946 hospitalized, a 60% rise in the past week, with 112 ICU cases. The state’s acting health minister announced a recruitment drive aimed at health students, retired nurses and other people with medical experience to bulk up staff numbers at the state’s vaccination clinics ahead of an expected surge in demand for booster shots as more Victorians reach the 4-month eligibility mark for the third dose.
Australia is shifting away from PCR testing in favor of at-home rapid antigen kits after skyrocketing case numbers overwhelmed testing facilities. NSW state on Wednesday introduced mandatory reporting of positive rapid antigen tests through an app, bringing it in line with most other states.
State and territory leaders will meet Thursday to discuss how best to manage the return of students to school classrooms within weeks, after the summer holiday break.
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