NSW Cases Explode As Super Spreader Events Drive Highest Daily Tally
2213 new infections
New South Wales infections continue to hit record levels with 2213 new infections reported on Friday and one Covid-related deaths.
There are currently 215 people in hospital, while 25 of those are in ICU.
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The new cases were detected from a whooping 127,583 swabs collected on Thursday, with test numbers doubling over 7-days.
As of Friday, more than 93 per cent of eligible people aged over 16 are now fully vaccinated, while 94.8 per cent have received their first dose.
Meantime, a red alert has been issued for NSW hospitals as the state experiences escalating Covid cases.
"We have temporarily restricted visitors to healthcare facilities due to increasing transmission rates with the emergence of the Omicron variant," NSW Health tweeted on Thursday.
"We have not made this decision lightly. We must always prioritise our vulnerable patients and staff who are arguably the most vital workers needed in a pandemic."
Fuelling the rise in numbers is a series of super-spreader events in pubs and clubs as people enjoy their new-found freedoms and celebrate the festive season, driving warnings from experts that we are approaching a “dangerous time” with Covid cases growing exponentially.
A Taylor Swift album party in Sydney's CBD last week saw all 600 TayTay fans thrown into isolation, with 97 people testing positive with some “likely” to be Omicron infections.
Anyone who attended the event from 9pm on Friday, December 10, is now considered a close contact and must get tested and isolate for seven days.
It follows a series of super-spreader events in Newcastle, now deemed the epicentre of the Omicron-fuelled outbreak in NSW, where Covid numbers have exploded into the hundreds after 680 revellers attended two clubs on December 8 and 9.
At the centre of Hunter's outbreak, a 20-year-old man has been fined $10,000 after allegedly skipping self-isolation and hitting the dancefloor in Newcastle before testing positive.
The flow-on has seen health authorities shut down the upcoming Lunar Electric music festival which was due to take place in Newcastle on Saturday.
Meantime, the state government extended vaccine mandates for healthcare workers, on Thursday bringing it into line with Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia.
It comes after Covid restrictions were relaxed on Wednesday, with masks only required in some indoor settings like public transport, QR check-ins scaled back, and density limits lifted.
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