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Australia suffers worst COVID day this year with millions in lockdown

WorldAug 07, 2021 07:11AM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Personnel from the Australian Defence Force and New South Wales Police Force patrol a street in the Bankstown suburb during an extended lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Sydney, Australia, August 3, 2021. RE

By Lidia Kelly

MELBOURNE (Reuters) -Australia saw a record daily number of new coronavirus cases this year on Saturday, with the country's most populous states of New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland recording a total of 361 cases of the highly infectious Delta variant.

With about 15 million people in the three states, or 60% of Australia's population, under a strict lockdown, the country also reported five coronavirus-related deaths, one of the highest this year.

NSW suffered its worst pandemic day, reporting 319 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases, with Sydney and neighbouring regional centres spanning 200 km (120 miles) of coastline under a stay-at-home order for six weeks already.

There are 345 people admitted to hospital in NSW, with 56 in intensive care and 23 under ventilation.

NSW authorities, who had been reluctant to put Sydney into a lockdown, said lack of observance of rules has been a problem.

"What we have happening right now is some people are not complying," NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said.

"Just stay at home - that is the circuit breaker. Stay at home and get vaccinated."

Neighbouring Victoria saw the highest daily jump in cases this year, with 29 new infections, as the state remains under a snap seven-day lockdown imposed earlier this week, the state's sixth since the start of the pandemic.

Victoria Premier Dan Andrews urged people to follow the public health rules that allow residents to leave their house only for essential work, shopping, care, vaccination or two hours of outdoor exercise.

"This Delta variant spreads so fast," Andrews said. "We don't have enough of people vaccinated, we will finish up with younger people in the hospital, otherwise fit and healthy people. Our system will be overrun if we don't bring this under control."

Queensland recorded 13 new cases, with all but one isolating while infectious, bringing hopes that the eight-day lockdown in parts of the state will be lifted as planned on Sunday afternoon.

With just over 36,000 COVID-19 cases and 937 deaths, Australia has avoided the high caseloads of other developed countries, but its vaccination figures are among the lowest, with only 20% of people aged over 16 fully vaccinated.

Australia suffers worst COVID day this year with millions in lockdown
 

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Comments (7)
John Healy
John Healy Aug 07, 2021 7:33PM ET
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Modus ponens:1. The vaccine greatly reduces the probability of dying from Covid2. I do not wish to die from CovidTherefore, I am fully vaccinated.I totally respect anyone who refuses to get vaccinated. In the long run, particularly if Darwin’s argument for natural selection holds true, the unvaccinated will have a greater fatality rate and remove themselves from the gene pool. Don’t believe the data? A trip through any ICU unit dealing with Covid patients would be enlightening. Virtually ALL hospitalizations and deaths are among the unvaccinated. Personally, I’ll accept the remote chance of developing myocarditis in favor of the 1/83,000 odds of death from a breakthrough infection. P.S. - I also wear a mask and carry concealed, right appendix.
mark mcewen
mark mcewen Aug 07, 2021 3:34PM ET
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Vaccines so effective that they do not work unless other people get them, they do not prevent you from getting the virus, they do not prevent you from spreading the virus, and after a few months they are telling you that you need boosters and have to start wearing a mask again even if vaccinated....because you know, science...
Eloy Rodrigo
Eloy Rodrigo Aug 07, 2021 11:44AM ET
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Thanks DeSantis for not permit any lockdown in FL, and keep things open up, please.
Joshua Harclerode
Joshua Harclerode Aug 07, 2021 11:44AM ET
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You can always choose toblock yourself down.
Kaveh Sun
Kaveh Sun Aug 07, 2021 11:18AM ET
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People should not suffer for this. Unbeleivable how Aussies put up with over a year in home jail.
Eudon Hickey
Eudon Hickey Aug 07, 2021 11:11AM ET
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Reuters is fueling the fake news.More people die from hunger and crime now a days than the covid. Lockdowns are evil
Adrian White
Adrian White Aug 07, 2021 11:11AM ET
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Eudon, you honestly still don't get it after all this time? It's not about the death rate. It's about preventing too many people from overloading the hospitals from getting sick enough to need hospitalization. People who are "dying of hunger" don't go to hospital. If they can't afford food then they certainly can't afford hospital.
David JC
David JC Aug 07, 2021 7:49AM ET
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So...millions live in three states and there are 341 cases? Wow!!! Control freaks are ramping up the scare tactics.
mark mcewen
mark mcewen Aug 07, 2021 1:19AM ET
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So basically imprisoning millions of people because a few people died over something that is less deadly than the common flu for the majority of the population and a vaccine is available that is supposedly super safe and effective? Makes absolutely no sense.
Adrian White
Adrian White Aug 07, 2021 1:19AM ET
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Asking people to stay home is hardly "imprisoning" people. Do you see guards or police preventing people from leaving their homes? Use some common sense. Yes, the vaccines are effective for vaccinated individuals, but to be effective for the population in general, you need more like 80% vaccinated, not a mere 20% like they currently have. Use some common sense. And again, it's not about how "deadly" the virus is. It's about how quickly and easily it spreads, and how many hospitalizations it causes.
 
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