Western Australia could see a COVID-19 caseload of up to 25,000 new infections per day in the coming weeks, the state’s chief health officer says.
Most important points:
- WA’s Chief Health Officer Says WA Could See Case Number Rise
- The state has seen more than 15,000 daily cases in three days
- WA’s vaccine mandate for workers will be reviewed in the coming weeks
There are 15,565 new cases reported in WA today, with more than 15,000 new infections the third consecutive day.
Three more deaths have been reported, with 279 Western Australians currently hospitalized with the virus and 12 people in intensive care – an increase of four from yesterday.
dr. Andy Robertson told ABC Radio Perth that the state could see COVID-19 numbers rise in the coming week.
“We will continue to see increases in the coming weeks and we will probably get between 20-25,000… [cases] in the coming weeks,” he said.
“We expect the numbers to drop after that.”
Despite this, Dr. Robertson said the timing was right to relax most of the COVID restrictions, which took place days before the state first recorded more than 10,000 cases in April.
He said lifting the mask mandate seemed appropriate, as data showed the virus spread more in private gatherings.
“What we’ve seen is that while all of those measures had been very effective in suppressing the outbreak, we started to see that the spread was largely within family groups, within social groups.”
Wearing a mask is strongly encouraged
dr. Robertson said he encouraged people to continue wearing masks if they felt it was necessary.
“We would strongly encourage people to consider wearing masks, but they have much less impact than they have had in the past,” he said.
While masks are no longer required for most workers, the vaccine mandate is still in effect: 80.7 percent of the eligible population has received their booster dose.
dr. Robertson said the mandate will be reviewed in the coming weeks.
“Some groups, such as those dealing with vulnerable groups, may want to keep the mandates, while there are other groups where those mandates aren’t as important going forward,” he said.
Public school brings back restrictions
The current COVID outbreak is putting pressure on all sectors, with at least one public school in Perth’s western suburbs imposing restrictions in an effort to contain staff numbers with the virus.
The ABC understands that parents with students at the school were told by the principal that the lifting of government restrictions had significantly affected the functioning of the school.
Obviously, the school currently has about half a dozen staff out of work due to COVID and, while that’s a figure the school could handle at the moment, it would make it even more difficult to manage.
The restrictions the school brought back include canceling meetings and other large gatherings, no mixed classes, and limits on the number of students allowed in certain classes.
Parents have been informed that these restrictions will remain in effect for the remainder of the semester.
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