Fears for New South Wales with Covid cases on the rise and even more super spreader events to come ahead of Christmas
- Covid-19 cases in NSW are expected to keep climbing after 1,360 on Wednesday
- There are now 110 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant in the community
- Health minister Brad Hazzard said cases could hit 25,000 a day in January
- Superspreader events in Newcastle and Sydney have added to huge case spike
The number of Covid-19 cases in NSW is expected to increase again after the highest count in more than three months, with predictions they could hit 25,000 infections a day in January.
The state reported 1360 cases from 104,501 tests on Wednesday, prompting NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet to repeat his call for the focus to shift to people in hospitals and ICU, of which there were 166 and 24 respectively.
While hospitalisations generally lag infection spikes, Mr Perrottet has ‘complete confidence’ the hospital system will cope thanks to the state’s 93.2 per cent full vaccination coverage.
The Omicron variant is believed to be behind an increasing number of cases, with Newcastle and Sydney seeing a surge.
The number of Covid-19 cases in NSW is expected to increase again after the highest count in more than three months (pictured are crowds at Bondi Beach)
More than a quarter of the new cases were in the Hunter region, following super spreader events in Newcastle.
NSW Health on Wednesday night issued an alert for a new venue of concern in that city – the Cambridge Hotel on Hunter Street.
Anyone who attended the hotel between 6.30pm on Friday and 2.30am on Saturday is considered a close contact of a positive Covid case who was there and should get tested and isolate for seven days.
All household contacts of close contacts should also be tested and self-isolate until a negative result is received.
‘It is likely some of these cases have the Omicron variant of concern,’ NSW Health said in a statement.
There have been 110 confirmed cases of Omicron in NSW since the first recorded infection in late November.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard warned Covid-19 cases are going to continue to rise, with modelling showing they could hit 25,000 a day by the end of January if the reproduction rate climbs.
NSW recorded its highest daily total in three months on Wednesday with 1,360 infections
He says the high case rate should encourage people to get booster shots, which 9000 people did on Tuesday.
Having two shots of a vaccine is not believed to reduce the transmissibility of the Omicron variant but does protect against more severe disease.
Booster shots are available for people who received their second shot five or more months ago.
Wednesday’s was the highest daily tally since September 11, when much of the state was still under lockdown.
It came on the day restrictions on unvaccinated people, mask wearing mandates and QR code check-ins were dropped in most settings.
On Wednesday, border restrictions on what had previously been eight southern African countries of concern were eased.
Arrivals who have been in those countries are now under the same rules as all other international travellers.
On Wednesday health minister Brad Hazzard said based on current modelling there could be as many as 25,000 cases a day in January