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NSW COVID cases will rise as freedoms come early

ASSA | 2021-11-04 10:41:38

NSW has kept COVID-19 new daily case numbers under 300 for a week but the premier warns this won’t be sustained as the state opens up, with extensive new freedoms to kick in next week.

“The reality is case numbers will increase, hospitalisations will increase - we need to learn to live alongside this pandemic,” Premier Dominic Perrottet said on Wednesday.

NSW has so far defied predictions that COVID cases and hospitalisations would soar as restrictions ease, keeping case numbers below 300 for the week to Wednesday.

There were 190 new infections recorded in the 24 hours to 8pm on Tuesday.

There were more four deaths reported on Wednesday, bringing the state’s COVID-19 death toll to 582 for the entire pandemic.

Perrottet declined to reveal what the latest modelling says, maintaining the state’s post-lockdown opening up would go ahead, on the back of “world leading” vaccination rates.

Some 93.7 per cent of people aged 16 and older have had one vaccine dose and 88.7 per cent are fully jabbed.

Restrictions to ease earlier

On Tuesday the premier announced most restrictions that were due to ease in December would lift on Monday - while unvaccinated people will have to wait until December 15 - or until the state achieves its 95 per cent double-dose vaccination target.

The double jabbed will be able to have as many visitors as they want while density and capacity limits at hospitality venues will be lifted, with dancing at nightclubs permitted.

Domestic travel, including trips between greater Sydney and regional NSW will be allowed.

Stadiums, racecourses, theme parks, zoos, and entertainment facilities such as cinemas, theatres and amusement centres can also operate at full capacity.

Meanwhile, WA Premier Mark McGowan announced NSW will be downgraded from an “extreme risk” zone to a “high risk” zone and some travel exemptions will be granted for fully vaccinated people as they test negative and quarantine for 14 days.

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