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Australia’s COVID-19 cases hit 1 million as Omicron surges to a record According to Reuters


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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A woman gets tested for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a testing center in Sydney, Australia, January 5, 2022. REUTERS / Jaimi Joy

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SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia on Monday passed 1 million COVID-19 cases, with more than half of them recorded in the past week, as the Omicron variant tore through most of the country, increasing the toll hospital admissions and strain the supply chain.

Having succeeded in containing its source of the virus through strong lockdowns and tough border controls earlier during the pandemic, Australia is now suffering record waves of infections as it began. survival with the virus after vaccination is higher.

Australia’s strict border rules are in the spotlight again after authorities canceled tennis star Novak Djokovic’s visa over questions about his vaccination exemption. His battle to stay in Australia will take place in court on Monday.

Djokovic, the world number one, argued that a recent COVID-19 infection had qualified him for the medical exemption required by the country for all travelers to be vaccinated twice.

With New South Wales and Victoria on Monday reporting around 55,000 new cases between them, the total number of COVID-19 infections in Australia has touched 1.03 million since the first case was recorded almost two years ago. Other states and territories will report their numbers later in the day.

A total of 2,387 deaths have been recorded to date, although the mortality rate in the Omicron outbreak has been lower than in previous viral outbreaks, with 92% of people on 16 dual doses and the rate select enhancement program.

The surge in hospitalizations forced officials to reinstate some restrictions in the states, while staff shortages due to quarantine regulations or people falling ill have affected businesses.

Authorities have slashed mandatory quarantine periods for close contacts and narrowed the definition of close contacts, but are still reviewing regulations for already existing outsourced workers. widen the supply chain gap.

From the second, Pfizer (NYSE:) (NYSE:)’s COVID vaccine will be made available to 2.3 million children ages five to 11, amid reports of vaccine shortages that authorities have ruled out .

Lieutenant General John Frewen, the head of the immunization force, told the Australian Broadcasting Corp on Monday: “There are enough vaccines and there are enough distribution points.

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