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Victoria has recorded 5499 cases, up from yesterday’s 5192, while NSW reported 8911 positive tests, compared to 13,093 yesterday.

Both states reported a death in people who had tested positive to the virus.

People queue for a COVID-19 test at St Vincent's Hospital in Fitzroy.
People queue for a COVID-19 test at St Vincent’s Hospital in Fitzroy, Melbourne. ( Scott McNaughton )

Two more coronavirus patients have lost their lives in Queensland, as the state recorded 3797 new cases. This is a slight increase from yesterday’s 3669.

There are 19 patients in ICU.

Elsewhere, cases have dropped in the Australian Capital Territory, with 599 new infections.

This marks a decline of 50 from yesterday.

There are 38 coronavirus patients being treated in hospital, with three of these in ICU.

‘The pandemic has not gone away’

The new figures come amid warnings of a new Omicron sub-variant, BA.2, spreading through the community.

Speaking to Today, NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said case numbers could increase dramatically there over the next four to six weeks.

“We are having forecasts we could see double the number of COVID cases in the next four to six weeks,” he said.

“The pandemic has not gone away.

“We’ve seen a change. We’ve gone from BA.1, a variant of COVID to BA.2.

“And the advice is it’s much more transmissible. It’s not necessarily more dangerous.

“We are expecting that more people may get it.”

Health Minister Brad Hazzard said COVID-19 cases could double in NSW in four to six weeks.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said COVID-19 cases could double in NSW in four to six weeks. (Today)
A woman waits for a COVID-19 booster in Melbourne.
A woman waits for a COVID-19 booster in Melbourne. (Bloomberg)

Mr Hazzard said ICU numbers in NSW have slightly increased over recent days; 47 people are being treated in intensive care, while Victoria has 25.

Residents who have recovered from COVID-19 are being urged to get booster shots “four to six weeks” after infection.

Mr Hazzard also said immunocompromised people should also keep up to date with vaccinations.

“More than two million people who are eligible at the present time to have their booster in NSW and they still haven’t had it,” he said.

“I just want to make sure everybody understands the need. Go and get your booster or go and get your vaccine,” he said, reiterating the importance of basic public health measures.

“When you’re in close proximity with others it still makes sense to wear a mask.

“A lot of issues that still need to be, wash your hands, don’t come to work if you’ve got any symptoms at all.”

Coles Eastgardens

How Australia faced the emergence of the Omicron variant

Source: 9News

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