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Australia Fifth NSW COVID death, restrictions linger

21:43  19 july  2021
21:43  19 july  2021 Source:   aap.com.au

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A fifth person has died amid the COVID-19 outbreak in Greater Sydney as the NSW premier admits "some level of restriction" will remain in place until the state's vaccination rates reach an acceptable level.

a police car parked in a parking lot: A Sydney woman linked to two removalists who breached COVID restrictions has died from the virus. © Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS A Sydney woman linked to two removalists who breached COVID restrictions has died from the virus.

The death of the southwest Sydney woman on Monday morning is the fifth in NSW since mid-June and the 61st throughout the pandemic.

The woman was in her 50s, making her the youngest COVID-19 death in Australia since a Victorian man died in August 2020.

The Green Valley woman was reportedly linked to removalists who travelled to central-west NSW while allegedly knowing they were COVID-positive. They have been handed court attendance notices for failing to comply with COVID directions.

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Monday marked the first weekday since harsh new restrictions were enforced on Greater Sydney - including an Australia-first shutdown of the construction sector for two weeks.

And while Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the current lockdown could only end when the number of cases infectious in the community nears zero, she admitted some restrictions will remain in place until vaccination rates are much higher.

This is because of the infectiousness of the Delta variant currently in the community.

About three in five NSW residents (57 per cent) aged over 50 have had their first vaccination dose, while just under one in five (18 per cent) have had both doses.

"Our population coverage - even for the over 60s - is not high enough and we have a good vaccine that can be used, where the risk of hospitalisation and death (from the virus) is very high as age increases," Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said.

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Dr Chant also said Australia needed to think about making vaccines available for children, particularly those of high school age, once older age groups are immunised.

NSW recorded 98 new local cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm on Sunday, maintaining a three-day average in the high 90s.

Up to 44 cases were active in the community while infectious, including 20 for their entire infectious period.

Three of every four cases were in Fairfield, Canterbury-Bankstown and Liverpool local government areas, but NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys denied the force was operating a "ring of steel" around southwest Sydney.

A total of 1340 people have officially contracted the virus since the first case - an unvaccinated airport limousine driver - was diagnosed on June 16.

A full list of NSW exposure sites can be found at health.nsw.gov.au

Why is the Queensland-New South Wales border still open, despite a COVID-19 case in a regional area? .
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This is interesting!