SPIKE IN INFECTIONS ON THE CENTRAL COAST, AS NSW RECORDS 1262 NEW COVID CASES

New South Wales has recorded 1262 local COVID-19 cases overnight and another seven deaths, including a man in his 20s from Western Sydney.

Thirty-three of the new cases are from the Central Coast, seven are from the Hunter and three are on the Mid North Coast.

Eleven of the Central Coast’s cases, and all of the Hunter’s, were out in the community while infectious, prompting several new exposure sites.

Hunter New England Health has opened a pop-up testing clinic in Hamilton South, after two residents at a community housing complex on the corner of Hassall Street and Glebe Road tested positive to the virus.

COVID-19 viral fragments have also been detected for the first time in the Karuah and Dungog sewage catchments.

Residents in these areas, along with Tamworth, Port Macquarie, Moruya, Trangie, Young, Brooklyn, Gerroa, Eden, Yass and Dunbogan, should monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they appear.

With no recent cases in these areas, the positive sewage detections of COVID-19 are of great concern to health authorities.

Today, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said 78 per cent of over 16-year-olds now had at least one dose of a vaccine.

More than 105,000 tests were conducted in the last day.

There are 1206 are now in hospital with COVID-19, 92 of whom require ventilation.

Ms Berejiklian said that there has been “some stabilisation in local government areas of concern”, which she described as pleasing.

But warned that the most concerning areas where the virus is “picking up pace” continues to be in some suburbs in south-western Sydney as well as some suburbs in inner-Sydney.

“We want to be sure that when we get to that 70 per cent double dose figure but we have managed to reduce our cases as much as we can to allow us to continue planning forward,” she said.

Of today’s deaths, they include a man in his 20s from Western Sydney, and a woman in her 40s, a woman in her 50s, a man in his 50s, a man in his 70s, a man in his 80s and woman in her 80s from each from south-western Sydney.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said the man in his 20s “had significant underlying health conditions and was unvaccinated”.

She also believes the state will be able to reach 90 per cent single-dose vaccinations.
“I want to see 80 per cent first dose next week, and I am confident we will get there around Tuesday or Wednesday,” she said.

“And then my challenge to the New South Wales community is, it’s get to 90 per cent the following week.

“I suppose I am being a bit optimistic, but I think we can actually get about 90 per cent first dose.

“I am pleased we have got the 12 to 15-year-old vaccination is coming on, as announced by the Commonwealth on Monday, so that group will have access to vaccination.”

Yesterday, a record 1599 new cases were detected along with and eight more deaths.

NSW has now administered a total of eight million vaccinations since the outbreak of the pandemic.