Outbreaks across Australia at the “new stage” of the pandemic

Covid test sign at Bondi Beach, New South Wales, June 26, 2021

Test rates were high across Sydney as the city of Sydney fights a deteriorating outbreak

Covid outbreaks in Sydney associated with the highly infectious Delta strain increased to 110 cases, but infections occurred in other parts of the country.

Small outbreaks have been recorded in the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

It is the first time in a few months that cases have occurred in different parts of Australia.

The federal and state governments will have an urgent discussion on the situation on Monday.

Treasury Secretary Josh Frydenberg said it was an “important time” for the country as various states closed their borders and set new restrictions to prevent further expansion.

“I think we’re entering a new phase of this pandemic with the more contagious Delta strain,” Frydenberg told ABC News Monday.

The spread of the Covid infection prompted blockades in the cities of Sydney and Darwin and restrictions in four states.

The situation remains of greatest concern in Sydney, with approximately 5 million residents subject to a stay-at-home order.

The New South Wales (NSW) provincial government expanded its blockade on Sunday to cover all of Sydney, the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast and Wollongong.

Many companies and venues have been ordered to close.

“Unfortunately, given how contagious this virus strain is, isolated people already have all the contacts in their homes,” said NSW Premier Gladys Beregicrian on Sunday.

Cases in Queensland and Western Australia date back to outbreaks in Sydney, but infections in the Northern Territory were unrelated strains.

The capital, Darwin, and two other Northern Territory towns entered a 48-hour blockade on Sunday after four new cases were reported.

Meanwhile, Virgin Australia said on Sunday that it had contacted passengers and crew on five recent domestic flights after the crew tested positive in Melbourne.

The outbreak prompted several interstate and international border closures.

New Zealand has suspended an unquarantined travel bubble across Australia, at least until Tuesday, due to a recent outbreak.

The travel corridor between the two neighbors was opened in April. Travel between New Zealand and certain Australian regions was closed for a short time due to an outbreak, but this is the first time the bubble has closed across Australia.

Healthcare workers will be seen at Bondi Beach Drive-Through Covid-19 Clinic on June 26, 2021 in Sydney, Australia

Sydney residents lined up to take a test at this drive-through clinic in Bondi Beach

Australia maintains a very low Covid infection rate throughout the pandemic due to closed border policies, strict quarantine, rapid inspection and tracking systems.

No deaths have been recorded this year, with a total of 910 deaths and 30,450 cases.

However, newer and more infectious variants of Covid are straining the country’s defenses-this year there were some minor outbreaks in many cities.

Blood Hazard, New South Wales Minister of Health, described the first Delta variant to emerge in India as a “very formidable enemy.”

“No matter what defenses are currently in place, the virus seems to understand how to counterattack,” he said.

The Sydney cluster first appeared two weeks ago in Bondi, a suburb of the famous beach, and has since spread rapidly throughout the city.

It is linked to an unvaccinated driver who transported the arrival of an international flight from the airport.

Recent outbreaks have fueled criticism that federal vaccinations are slow to deploy.

So far, just under 5% of Australia’s adult population has been fully vaccinated and about 30% have been first dosed.

Government critics argue that if a majority of the population is vaccinated, cities do not have to endure the blockage again.

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