In Australia’s most populous state, the prime minister said intensive care cases in Australia’s New South Wales will peak in October as COVID-19 infections accumulate.
New South Wales, the epicenter of the current outbreak in Australia, has reported 1,290 new cases, as the nation struggles to contain the highly contagious delta variant.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the state was preparing for additional hospitalizations as infections mounted, before it began increasing vaccination coverage to ease the pressure.
“We expect the worst month, the worst time for our ICU, to be in October,” Berejiklian said in the state capital, Sydney.
“We will need to manage things differently because we are in the middle of a pandemic, but we will deal with it.”
There are 840 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in NSW, of whom 137 are in intensive care and 48 require ventilation. The state reported four additional deaths on Monday, bringing the COVID-19 death toll to 1,003 in Australia.
One of the four was the first known death of an Aboriginal person. The 50-year-old, who was not vaccinated, lived in western New South Wales where vaccination rates are particularly low, raising fears of more deaths there.
“Indigenous peoples were considered vulnerable communities, and groups at risk in rolling out the vaccine. That has clearly failed,” Linda Burnie, shadow minister for the Australian Indigenous Labor Party, told reporters.
Australia has used a strict system of lockdown and quarantine to keep rates of coronavirus infection and death lower than in most similar countries, however, the delta variant is now putting pressure on health services.
Slightly more than 33 percent of those aged 16 or older have received two doses of the vaccine, much lower than in most comparable countries, according to government data.
-From Reuters, last updated at 7:15 a.m. ET
What’s happening all over Canada
What is happening around the world
As of early Monday morning, more than 216.4 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University, which tracks coronavirus cases. The reported global death toll was 4.5 million.
In the AmericasThe government’s top infectious disease expert says the United States is committed to its recommendation for Americans to get booster doses of the coronavirus eight months after receiving a vaccine, but it will be open to changes based on evolving data. Dr. Anthony Fauci said there was “no doubt” in his mind that people would need to get an extra dose after they’ve received two doses of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, given the highly contagious delta variant.
He noted that the administration has been focused on doing so in a “quick” and “possible” way beyond the eight-month mark, with dosing starting from the week of September 20, pending approval from the Food and Drug Administration.
In the Asia Pacific In the region, Singapore has fully vaccinated 80 percent of its population, reaching a milestone that will make the country “more resilient to COVID-19,” according to a senior government official. Singapore’s 80 percent vaccination rate among its population of 5.7 million makes it among the most vaccinated countries in the world.
“It is the result of a collective effort of many people working behind the scenes, and the people of Singapore are stepping up to take care of themselves and the people around them,” Singapore’s Health Minister Aung Yi Kung said in a Facebook post on Sunday.
In the Middle eastIsrael on Sunday began providing a booster dose for children as young as 12, and its prime minister said a month-old campaign among the elderly has slowed the rise in severe disease caused by the delta-type.
The Yemeni Ministry of Health said that Yemen received the first shipment of vaccines produced by Johnson & Johnson on Sunday, with about 151,000 doses.
in a Africa, South African health officials reported 7,740 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday and an additional 134 deaths.
France said it will provide an additional 10 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to African countries over the next three months. France and the African Union announced in a statement on Monday a “new partnership” that would allow Paris to provide two additional vaccines from AstraZeneca and Pfizer.
in a EuropeThe Dutch government says financial support packages to help companies survive the coronavirus pandemic will expire on October 1.
On Monday, the government announced that with the economy back on track, lockdown measures largely over and unemployment low, “continued support will stand in the way of economic recovery.”
On Monday, the Danish Health Authority recommended that people with severe immunodeficiency get a third dose of the Corona virus vaccine.
–From Reuters, Associated Press and CBC News, last updated at 10:45 a.m. ET