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NSW on brink of 1500 daily cases

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NSW has reported another 1485 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 and three deaths, with another 183 cases recorded in Victoria.

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Premier Gladys Berejiklian said 40 per cent of the state’s population was now fully vaccinated.

“That is an incredible milestone to have reached given where we were a few months ago,” the premier said on Sunday.

The three deaths in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday were a woman in her 50s who’d had one vaccine dose, who died at Blacktown Hospital, a woman in her 70s who died at Campbelltown Hospital and a man in his 70s who died at Liverpool Hospital, both of whom were unvaccinated.

The death toll for the current NSW outbreak is now 126.

There are 1,030 COVID-19 patients in NSW in hospital, with 175 in intensive care and 72 who require ventilation.

Meanwhile, police, fire and emergency services staff in Sydney’s coronavirus hotspots will be jabbed in big numbers on Sunday as the state targets them in a “super vaccination blitz”.

After announcing a record day for case numbers with 1533 positive cases on Saturday, Hazzard said the government wanted to make sure all frontline workers are vaccinated, describing Sunday as a “golden opportunity” for any hold-outs.

At least 73 per cent of NSW residents aged 16 and over have been vaccinated at least once, with more than 7.3 million jabs administered in the state.

A survey of more than 6,500 hotel staff across NSW has found the majority of employees support the premier’s calls for double vaccination and more than half will be fully vaccinated by the end of October.

The Australian Hotels Association NSW Chief Executive Officer John Whelan said it was encouraging that 63.5 per cent of employees surveyed believed it should be a requirement for all hotel employees to be fully vaccinated.

“If you want to get down to the pub when we re-open, get vaccinated now,” Whelan said.

“You’ll need two jabs and you don’t want to be left out when things finally open up.”

A smaller number (6.6 per cent) of staff said they did not intend to be vaccinated while 9.5 per cent were undecided.

In Victoria, another 183 more cases of COVID-19 were reported.

Health authorities on Sunday reported the additional coronavirus patients, adding that 101 of the cases are linked to known cases and outbreaks.

The state’s chief health officer continues to urge more people to get vaccinated in order to hold back the “tsunami” of potential cases.

State-run clinics administered 29,950 vaccines on Saturday.

About 25,000 AstraZeneca vaccination bookings remained available over the next week, Brett Sutton said.

“We know people are more than fed up. They are absolutely frustrated and challenged by the lockdown that’s gone on for weeks,” he told reporters.

“There’s no question that it’s hard, (but) the alternative is too awful to contemplate; tens of thousands of cases could be our reality if we don’t maintain those really tricky constraints on our life.

“We’ve held back a tsunami of cases for 20 months. We’ve got maybe the biggest challenge we’ve faced, but we’ve got a proper pathway out of here with vaccination.”

Statistics provided on Saturday revealed there were 76 people in Victorian hospitals, including 23 in intensive care.

None of those people have been fully vaccinated.

Prof Sutton said Victoria could reach a plateau if vaccination rates stayed high and virus cases stayed under control.

“That is our opportunity and we have to grab it with both hands,” he said.

“So hold the line in these last weeks and months until we get the high vaccination coverage.”

Victorian businesses struggling amid extended lockdowns will share in more than $2.3 billion of government support.

The Victorian government will split $2.34 billion in funding with the federal government to support more than 175,000 businesses over the next four weeks.

Most of the payments will be automatically deposited into the businesses’ bank accounts.

-AAP 

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