Covid-19: in Australia, Sydney prepares its deconfinement

Vaccinated residents of Sydney will finally emerge from a lockdown of more than three months in mid-October, authorities said, unveiling on Monday September 27 a “plan for freedom” as the number of cases decreases in the city . Stay-at-home obligations must be lifted in Sydney and New South Wales when full immunization rates exceed 70%, a target State Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian expects to reach on October 11. .

For the first time in more than three months, pubs, restaurants and shops will then be able to reopen to vaccinated customers and friends and families living in Australia’s largest city will be able to come together again. “There is only this week and next week to go”, encouraged Ms. Berejiklian. “We’re almost there, almost there, let’s not give up at the last minute. “

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the “Plan for freedom” will allow travel through New South Wales when 80% of those over 16 are vaccinated, a threshold that could be reached by the end of October, Deputy Prime Minister John Barilaro said. The limitation on the number of guests at funerals and weddings will be lifted at the same time and sporting events can resume.

Prolonged confinement for the unvaccinated

Unvaccinated adults will have to wait at least until 1er December to enjoy these same freedoms, when 90% of the population of age to be vaccinated should be. The number of daily cases fell to 800 in New South Wales on Monday, from a peak of around 1,500 in September, and 85% of the adult population has received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Ms. Berejiklian expects a rebound in the number of cases with the end of confinement but remains confident in the ability to manage these patients. “We know that once we reopen with 70% of people having received two doses, the number of cases will skyrocket”, she warned. “But what will protect us is the fact that a lot of people will have received at least the first dose of the vaccine and these people will have an extra layer of protection that will prevent them from ending up in the hospital, or worse.”.

Australia has suffered a winter wave of Covid-19 due to the highly contagious Delta variant, which has forced the country’s two largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, to impose lockdown for several months. But the vaccination campaign, slow to start, has accelerated, allowing leaders to establish a reopening plan also including a resumption of international flights by the end of the year.

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The World with AFP

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