Australia

NSW records 1,599 local cases of COVID-19 and eight deaths

The state passed the eight million mark for vaccinations, said health minister Brad Hazzard. He said 77.3 per cent of NSW’s adult population has received one jab and 44.5 per cent is fully vaccinated.

NSW Health’s Dr Jeremy McAnulty said there are now 1,164 people in hospital with COVID-19 in NSW. He said this includes 221 people in intensive care, with 94 of those people requiring ventilation. 

Retrieval specialist at NSW Ambulance Dr Brian Burns said he believes Australians have a “responsibility” to get vaccinated.”

He said the most common theme among COVID-19 patients he’s seeing is that they are unvaccinated.

“It is awful to see these patients and these conditions,” Dr Burns said.

“Often they are young, previously healthy and one that stands out to me was a young woman I recently transferred who had just delivered a baby.”

Mr Hazzard said that “until we get the vaccine in arms to the numbers we have identified”, the state will continue to see a rise in hospitalisations and case numbers. 

It comes after NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced on Friday that the daily COVID-19 press conferences would be cancelled and replaced with a daily pre-recorded video from health officials. 

She said ad hoc press briefings would be held as required. 

Mr Hazzard defended the decision to cancel daily press conferences. He said attending and preparing for press conferences eats up significant time.

“You think it is just for one hour or whatever it is that you walk in here,” he told a reporter.

“But in fact, there is the preparation for the morning… There is a massive team of people getting ready, drawing in all the information.

“That time is taken out from the time we need to do the things you want us to do.”

More to come. 

SBS is providing live translations of daily New South Wales and Victoria COVID-19 press conferences in various languages. Click here for more information.

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