/ 26 July 2021

More Pfizer to deal with NSW’s ‘national emergency’

Since NSW declared the outbreak of the Delta strain of the coronavirus a “national emergency” on Friday, 304 new local cases were reported over the weekend. That means the lockdown of Greater Sydney and surrounding regions will go beyond the end of this week – and The Australian this morning says that the state is eyeing a mid-September end date (paywall). Adding to the seriousness of the situation, the death of a 38yo international student was confirmed yesterday. Cases were also reported over the weekend in Victoria (23) and South Oz (3), with their lockdowns on track to lift tomorrow. But in NSW, all eyes remain on the vaccination program.

AND THERE ARE SOME CHANGES, RIGHT?
Right. The latest advice from the official experts is that all adults in Greater Sydney should “strongly consider” getting vaccinated with any available vaccine, including AstraZeneca. For those who would get a jab today but can’t secure an appointment, things will ease up in the coming weeks, officials say. That’s because PM Scott Morrison yesterday confirmed NSW will receive an extra 90,000 Pfizer doses this week along with more AstraZeneca shots. And while NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian says vaccination is her state’s way out of lockdown, PM Scott Morrison told his home state that doing lockdown well was the only road out. “Let me be clear, there is no alternative,” he said yesterday. Looking ahead, if you can get your head around what 2022 and beyond might look like, there will be plenty of Pfizer for booster shoots under a new deal, Morrison said yesterday.

I’M STILL TRYING TO GET MY HEAD AROUND THE WEEKEND’S PROTESTS…
You’re not the only one… Saturday’s demonstrations against COVID regulations/lockdowns/vaccination took place in the 3 locked down cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, as well as Brisbane. The one of most concern was in Sydney, where reports say the gathering of 3,500 people, including some from the ultra-locked down southwestern suburbs, could turn into a “super-spreader” event. NSW authorities said they’d received more than 5,000 tip-offs and had identified 200 people at the rally with charges to follow. NSW Police Minister David Elliott said those involved were “just a whole lot of halfwits.”

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