Sydney, Australia | Wed, August 4, 2021
On Wednesday, New South Wales confirmed one of the country’s youngest deaths from COVID-19, as daily infections remained near a 16-month high despite the state capital Sydney’s lockdown nearing its sixth week.
Authorities claimed the anonymous man in his 20s died at his home in the city, despite the fact that he had no underlying health conditions and was immunized. They noted that he quickly deteriorated after initially complaining of only mild symptoms.
The fatality illustrates the dangers that face Australia’s largest city, which is fighting to suppress an epidemic of the highly deadly Delta form despite the fact that only about 20% of Sydney residents have been vaccinated.
Last year, a man in his 20s in the neighboring state of Victoria died of COVID-19, while the specific cause of death is still being investigated by a coroner. In the last 24 hours, two COVID-19 deaths have been reported in New South Wales (NSW).
NSW also saw 233 new cases, which is close to a 16-month high reported last week, and State Premier Gladys Berejiklian predicted that the number would continue to rise.
“I’m not going to rule out the possibility that case numbers may worsen; in fact, I believe they will worsen,” Berejiklian told reporters in Sydney.
“Looking at the number of infectious people in the community, it appears that we haven’t yet achieved our peak.” Berejiklian is under a lot of pressure to loosen the limitations on migration that are threatening to send Australia into its second recession in a row.
However, she has stated that at least 50% of the state’s population must be vaccinated in order for the restrictions to be lifted by the end of August. Despite this, many people are still hesitant to take the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is the most widely available of the two vaccinations allowed in the country, due to a rare blood clotting concern.
Furthermore, according to official modeling provided on Tuesday, at least 70% of the state’s population would need to be immunized to prevent the spread of the disease. Authorities have cautioned people not to wait for an increase in Pfizer supply, which is due next month, because case numbers are difficult to control and sewage testing show the coronavirus has migrated north.
New South Wales has taken dramatic efforts to halt the spread of the coronavirus, including isolating high-risk neighbourhoods and enlisting the military’s assistance in enforcing lockdown orders.
During the current outbreak, which began on June 16, 17 individuals have died in Sydney. During that time, the outbreak has increased the number of cases in NSW to over 4,000. Since the epidemic began, Australia has documented 927 deaths, with little over 35,000 cases out of a population of 22 million people.
Queensland recorded 16 locally acquired cases on Wednesday, the same number as the day before, prompting officials to label it the state’s biggest outbreak since the pandemic began and warn that a lockdown in the capital Brisbane could be prolonged beyond Sunday.
“We’ll be extending the lockdown in Queensland if we don’t do something really, really, very remarkable,” Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young told reporters in Brisbane.