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Marlborough Express - 2021-07-23

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States under Covid hammer

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recorded in the 24 hours to 8pm on Wednesday and was up from 110 the previous day. The previous high was 112 cases last week. Of the 124 cases, 37 were in isolation throughout their infectious period, 22 were in isolation for part of their infectious period and 48 cases were infectious in the community. The isolation status of 17 cases remains under investigation. Greater Sydney and surrounding regions will have to wait until at least the weekend to see what impact harsher lockdown rules have had and to see if the lockdown will end on time. In Victoria there have been 26 new locally acquired cases of coronavirus a week into its statewide lockdown. But Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton says he suspects the state would already be dealing with 200 to 300 cases if it had not entered lockdown a week ago, citing the highly infectious nature of the Delta variant. ‘‘It is a variant that takes off from dozens to thousands of cases within just a matter of weeks,’’ he said on Wednesday. ‘‘If we’d locked down today, instead of when we did, we would get thousands of cases in the next couple of weeks. We’d be in a world of hurt.’’ Meanwhile, Scott Morrison has again challenged a panel of medical experts to rethink their advice on the Astrazeneca vaccine. He is urging the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation to recommend the jab to people under 60. Pfizer remains the preferred coronavirus vaccine for that age group. ATAGI is advising the risks of extremely rare blood clots outweigh the benefits of Astrazeneca for under 60s. But Morrison believes coronavirus outbreaks across NSW, Victoria and South Australia have changed the equation. ‘‘When Covid cases are rising, that means people have a greater likelihood of catching Covid, particularly older people, then the balance or risk changes,’’ he said yesterday. –AAP

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