Aus state pushes for booster shots amid Covid surge

As the number of daily Covid-19 cases in the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) has continued to surge, authorities have pushed for booster shots as the way forward to curb the further spread of the virus instead of imposing more restrictions.

NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard on Sunday called for all eligible citizens to get the booster shot, reports Xinhua news agency.

He noted that people were already “voting with their feet”, saying that NSW Health Facilities had given 57,000 booster shots in the last week up from 15,000 in the previous week.

On Sunday, NSW reported 2,566 new cases, a slight increase from Saturday’s 2,482 infections.

A total of 313 cases of the Omicron variant have been confirmed in the state since the first one was detected in late November.

Hospitalisations, which have yet to follow the sharp rise in cases over the past week, have also begun to increase, with 227 Covid patients reported to be in the hospital, up from 206 on Saturday.

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet said rising cases would be “the new normal” and rebutted calls for re-imposing indoor mask mandates and restrictions, saying that numbers in intensive care units (ICU) would be a key metric going forward.

“We want to make sure that our health system has the capacity as we move through this next challenge of the pandemic,” he said.

Currently 28 individuals in NSW are in ICU with the disease.

“When we believe there’s evidence in front of us (that) we need to potentially tighten restrictions, we will,” said Perrottet.




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