Australia’s most populous state, NSW, will reveal its roadmap for 80 percent vaccination coverage in the coming week, with premiers wanting international travel to resume “as soon as possible”.
Nine more deaths were recorded in the state in the 24 hours to 8 pm local time on Saturday. None of the nine people aged 40 to 80 had double jaws.
The state’s death toll for the current outbreak now stands at 297. There are currently 1,146 COVID-19 cases in hospital in NSW, with 222 people in intensive care and 117 on ventilators.
The number of people infected on average from each positive case in that week – known as the average growth factor – fell to 0.98, falling below one for the first time since the outbreak began in mid-June.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters on Sunday that the government’s plan for 80 percent double-dose vaccination coverage – expected in late October – would be revealed in the coming days.
The government has said it will return freedom to fully vaccinated Australians starting at 70 percent vaccine coverage.
This is likely to include large gathering caps, large event crowds, auctions and the resumption of community play. But it could also include delaying the government to restart regional NSW travel from 70 percent to 80 percent coverage.
Berejiklian has already promised to rapidly increase the international flight arrival cap for Australians stranded overseas.
On Sunday, she expressed hope that outbound travel, currently restricted by federal authorities, would also be allowed again soon.
It comes a day after Berejiklian’s Queensland counterpart Anastasia Palaszczuk expressed her strong opposition to the resumption of international travel as soon as possible.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has previously expressed his support for NSW residents to resume international travel before other states.
“Other states may not be ready for this yet, but that is okay, NSW is moving fast and if we think it is safe to do so, of course we can freely give our double-vaccinated citizens Will allow to move,” Berejiklian said.
“I want NSW residents who are fully vaccinated to be able to go abroad as soon as possible… if they have been double vaccinated and those are the plans, and airlines are flying, why not ?”
Freedom would also be restored for the unspecified at an unspecified later date, Berejiklian said, but not in the short term.
Greater Sydney has now been in lockdown for more than 13 weeks, with some residents ordering marches on Friday after large crowds gathered on beaches in Bondi and Manly.
Police issued three fines for violations of public health orders and issued several guidelines to disperse the crowd.
“I request everyone to please hold the line. It’s really important that we work hard now, so when we start to open at 70 percent, we’re able to do it safely and by bringing everyone together,” Berejiklian said.
“We would all like to think that once we get to that 80 percent double dose, it will be back to living without COVID, but it will not happen.
“This will be a new COVID normal but we will enjoy a lot more freedom than we are today and we will all adjust our lives.”
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times