New South Wales has recorded another 1533 new COVID-19 cases and four more deaths in the last 24 hours.
New South Wales has recorded another 1533 new local COVID-19 cases and four more deaths in the last 24 hours, the highest daily total during this pandemic.
The results come from more than 131,000 tests.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the new deaths included a man in his 60s and a man in his 50s both from western Sydney, and a woman in her 80s and a man in his 70s from south-west Sydney.
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"I want to express my condolences to each of those people's families, friends, the passing of a family member or friend is always extremely sad," he said.
"I really want to express the strong wishes to each of the community members who knew those people and just to say we're thinking of you.
"Sadly, none of the four people who passed away were vaccinated."
A total of 72 per cent of the population aged 16 and over have now received one dose of a vaccine in NSW, with a 39 per cent fully vaccinated.
The majority of the positive cases still continue to be in south-west and Western Sydney, Mr Hazzard added.
NSW Health's Dr Jeremy McAnulty said that positive COVID-19 sewage detection has been found in a number of regions where there are currently no active cases.
"Those communities where we have detected virus include Tamworth, Port Stephens in the Hunter New England area and Cooma, and Kempsey on the mid North Coast.
"So if you live in one of those communities, please be very aware, come forward for testing even with the mildest of symptoms."
Asked on whether the hospitalisation rate in NSW is accurate amid reports the total could be as high as 15 per cent, not five per cent as stated by Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Dr McAnulty said that the number relates to people who are physically in a hospital bed and not treated from home.
"With any disease, people can be cared for at home because they don't need to go into hospital," he said.
"If you think of the range of infectious disease that we get, we very rarely need to go into hospital.
"So the rate of hospitalisation is one marker that we used to determine the severity of disease. But we are well aware that there is a range, a whole spectrum of diseases that people can have out there."
Regions remain of concern
Regional NSW also remains of concern for health authorities, as case numbers continue to rise particularly in Dubbo and Wilcannia.
In the Western NSW LGA, 38 new cases of COVID-19 reported to 8pm last night, bringing the total number of case numbers in the district to 759.
The majority of those cases are in Dubbo, where 22 were detected in the last day.
Nine were detected in Bourke, three in Bathurst, three in Orange and one in Bogan Shire.
There were nine new cases in the Far Western LGA in the last day, all of whom are in Wilcannia. There are now a total of 97 cases in Wilcannia and 19 in Broken Hill.
Super Sunday vaccine blitz to target firefighters, police
Mr Hazzard said efforts will be focused on fire and emergency responders tomorrow as the state prepares for another super Sunday vaccine blitz.
"Tomorrow we're going to have a super vaccination blitz for police, fire and emergency services personnel who live in those 12 LGA is of concern," he said.
"Tomorrow is your golden opportunity."
Asked on why emergency service responders are being targeted this late into an outbreak, Mr Hazzard said that there are a range of reasons why those who had already been offered a jab may not have been able to receive one.
"Police were one of the first groups to be offered it (the vaccine) in the 1A group that the federal government designated," he said.
"But I was talking to someone about an hour ago who was pregnant and didn't get vaccinated and is now wanting to be vaccinated.
There are a whole range of reasons why people may not have been vaccinated to this date."
Response ramped up in anticipation of peak case numbers and hospitalisations
Meanwhile, paramedic graduates will be accelerated into the workforce while Sydney firefighters are on standby as the state's COVID-19 response is ramped up in anticipation of peak case numbers and hospitalisations.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said yesterday that she expects the worst is yet to come in terms of those admitted to hospital with the virus, with the next two weeks expected to bring a sharp rise in case numbers.
She also said the month of October will be worst for hospitalisations as medical staff wait for the effects of vaccinations to set in.
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"The next fortnight is likely to be our worst in terms of the number of cases," Ms Berejiklian said.
"In terms of hospitalisations and ICU beds, there's often a two week lag."
In response, NSW Ambulance has been working on a number of options including accelerating more graduates into the workforce, cancelling annual leave and partnering with other emergency service organisations.
Fire and Rescue NSW also said crews are at the ready to provide assistance where necessary.
"Fire and Rescue NSW is working with the State Emergency Operations Centre should we need to provide any additional assistance, such as a humanitarian response, similar to the operational support we provided to the Ruby Princess in Port Kembla last year, including tents with utilities, decontamination areas and other facilities," a spokesperson told the Sydney Morning Herald.
READ MORE: NSW records 1431 new COVID-19 cases and 12 more deaths
Ms Berejiklian said that all the measures taken by the government to combat the worsening outbreak will be detailed in the days to come and that preparations have been ongoing for the last year and a half.
"We'll be able to present in very good detail next week on all the preparation work that's been happening in the last 18 months, to make sure that everybody can feel confident that if they do need those services that they will get the best care possible," she said.
There are currently 979 patients in hospital with COVID-19 as of yesterday, including 160 in intensive care.
A total of 25,000 cases and 119 deaths have been recorded in NSW since the start of the Delta outbreak.
Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/national/nsw-ramps-up-covid19-response-in-anticipation-of-peak-case-numbers-and-hospitalisations/f8a514f2-85a2-4fa9-85a8-215b7e616669