Sydney COVID-19 cases fall as curbs ease in virus hotspots

Sydney, Sept 20 (BNA): The Australian state of New South Wales on Monday reported its lowest rise in daily COVID-19 cases in more than three weeks, as some lockdown restrictions were eased in Sydney, the state capital, amid a surge in vaccination. . levels.

Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian said 935 new cases were discovered in New South Wales, the lowest daily number since August 27, and down from 1,083 on Sunday. The state reported four more deaths, according to Reuters.

“We’re feeling more positive than we’ve been in two weeks,” Berejiklian told reporters in Sydney. “But I don’t want any of us to sit down and think the worst is behind us.” Coming days.

“As we’ve seen a backlog of so many cases, we know October is going to be a huge challenge for our hospital system.”

Nearly half of Australia’s 25 million people are on lockdown after a rapidly changing delta spread in Sydney and Melbourne, its largest cities, forcing officials there to abandon the COVID-zero target and switch to rapid vaccinations to ease restrictions.

As vaccine rollout picks up speed, with 53% of the adult population in New South Wales fully vaccinated, some restrictions on gatherings were eased on Monday in 12 of the hardest-hit suburbs in western Sydney. Time limits for outdoor exercise have been raised, while fully vaccinated people can gather outside in groups of five.

Neighboring Victoria, which includes Melbourne, recorded one new death and 567 new infections, its largest daily rise this year, a day after revealing a roadmap for returning to freedom when vaccinations reached 70%, expected around October 26.

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So far, 44% of the state’s population has been fully vaccinated, lower than the national average of 47%.

Australia has largely survived COVID-zero for most of the pandemic, with 1,167 deaths and nearly 87,000 cases. About 56,000 cases have been recorded since mid-June when the first delta infection was detected in Sydney.

While New South Wales and Victoria bear the brunt of the Delta outbreak, most other states with little or no community transmission fear that opening up too soon could overwhelm their hospital systems.

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