Australia Covid news live: Victoria records 1,220 new cases and three deaths; Andrew Constance to quit NSW politics

8.23pm EDT20:23

NSW: Fully vaccinated close contacts will only need to isolate for 7 days

8.19pm EDT20:19

And now to Victoria:

Dan Andrews revealed that in Victoria 476 people are in hospital, with 98 in intensive care and 57 on a ventilator. Of those in hospital, only 5% were fully vaccinated.

Andrews said:

In other words: if you are fully vaccinated, you are at but a fraction, a tiny percentage of the chance of being hospitalised and becoming gravely ill. Your risk is dramatically reduced. It’s the single most important thing you can do to prevent yourself or someone you love ending up in hospital.

at 8.20pm EDT

8.18pm EDT20:18

Back to NSW:

NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant says the next week will be “critical” and urges NSW to get tested and increase the testing rate.

About 88,000 people got tested in the past 24 hours, but Chant says that rate must lift to detect any further community transmission.

She says the declining case numbers are positive, but says there is seeding across regional areas, which is of concern, including in Wollongong, Newcastle, Maitland, Wellington, Queanbeyan and Deniliquin.

She announces the deaths of 10 people, two of whom were in their 50s, four in their 60s, two people in their 70s, and two people in their 80s. Four were not vaccinated.

Chant says two elderly people have died despite being fully vaccinated. They were both residents of aged care facilities.

This highlights the fact that, despite being fully vaccinated … the elderly will still remain vulnerable, given their age, and it is important that we take steps to protect the elderly.

at 8.21pm EDT

8.17pm EDT20:17

at 8.19pm EDT

8.15pm EDT20:15

8.11pm EDT20:11

86.2% of Victorians aged 16+ have received at least one Covid-19 vaccine dose

at 8.15pm EDT

8.09pm EDT20:09

at 8.14pm EDT

8.08pm EDT20:08

In NSW, Hazzard said the good result has “taken a lot of hard work” and urges people not to “ruin it” during this afternoon’s NRL grand final.

He says ignoring the rules and guidelines would allow the virus to come back and take hold.

You shouldn’t be having people at your home. Your home remains one of those dangerous places to be in terms of transmission of the virus. We need to ensure that we enjoy the game but that we don’t have a super spreader event.

at 8.10pm EDT

8.07pm EDT20:07

8.04pm EDT20:04

NSW records 667 new locally acquired cases

NSW health minister Brad Hazzard has just announced a “dramatic drop” in Covid cases.

NSW recorded 667 locally acquired cases.

There are 981 Covid cases in hospital and 195 in intensive care units, with 140 of those not vaccinated. Forty-one had received a first dose and 14 had two doses.

at 8.09pm EDT