Ramping up the rollout
The COVID climb continues in NSW with 98 new cases recorded yesterday. Another death was also reported taking the outbreak’s toll to 5. And Victoria’s lockdown will be extended past tonight’s deadline until a date to be named as 16 more local cases were identified. As for South Oz, yesterday saw the return of hard restrictions, but it didn’t go the lockdown route after 3 local cases were reported yesterday. With all that happening and the Delta variant continuing to spread, experts say lockdowns could remain in place until many more people are vaccinated.
HOW’S THAT GOING?
As of yesterday, 13.7% of the eligible population is fully vaccinated and 35.3% have received one dose. And the pace is expected to pick up in the coming weeks after a million Pfizer doses arrived yesterday – the first expedited delivery with 4.5 million more to come in August. The precious cargo is already being distributed nationwide with Sydney’s southwest – the centre of the city’s outbreak – getting a large number of doses. Supply delays and changes to the expert advice on the AstraZeneca vaccine have seen leaders, officials and many Aussies don their cranky dacks in recent weeks. Asked about it yesterday, the head of the COVID-19 Vaccine Taskforce Lieutenant General John Frewen said things were on track for every Aussie who wanted a vaccine to get one by year’s end.
SO, WHEN WILL WE BE ABLE TO OPEN UP?
Dunno. And the government hasn’t provided its targets or timelines to get the job done. Frewen says modelling on vaccination rates and what’s required to reach herd immunity will be presented to the government in the coming weeks. But the Delta strain has changed the game, officials say. Yesterday, NSW Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant said “a rethink about the level of vaccination” was happening thanks to the highly contagious strain. She also said consideration needs to be given to vaccinating children in order to reach the goal of keeping communities safe from COVID. Ah Delta, she’s a problem…
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