Australia’s Covid hospital admissions hit record high as country battles ‘twin-endemic’ with flu

Australia’s coronavirus hospitalization rate has hit record highs as the country grapples with a ‘double whammy’ of Covid and flu.

Official figures show there were 5,450 patients with Covid in the hospital on Monday, eclipsing the previous record of 5,390 during the first Omicron wave in January.

That number has risen from about 3,000 a month ago amid outbreaks of the highly contagious but equally mild BA.4 and BA.5 subtypes.

Australia was hailed as a Covid success story early in the pandemic when it managed to keep cases to virtually zero by turning itself into a sanatorium state with repeated lockdowns and border closures.

But the brutal ‘Zero Covid’ policy – which he abandoned just two years into the pandemic – is believed to have left his population less immune.

About 95 per cent of Australians are dually vaccinated and 70 per cent are boosted, but until this year barely anyone had been exposed to the virus.

The strict lockdown strategy is also believed to have weakened people’s immunity against seasonal diseases, and has been blamed for the current flu epidemic.

Australia’s flu season, which normally runs from June to September, started unusually early this year and caused infections to soar to 10 times pre-pandemic levels within weeks.

The New Labor government has resisted calls to reintroduce social distancing but has recommended people wear masks indoors and businesses allow employees to work from home if they can.

Official Figures Showed There Were 5,450 Patients In Hospital With Covid On Monday, Eclipsing The Previous Record Of 5,390 During The First Omicron Wave In January.

Official figures showed there were 5,450 patients in hospital with Covid on Monday, eclipsing the previous record of 5,390 during the first Omicron wave in January.

Dr. Leanna Wayne, a professor of public health policy at George Washington University in the United States, said WebMD Australia was in the midst of a ‘twin-endemic’ early in the pandemic due to a lack of natural exposure to Covid and influenza.

At a press conference last week, Health Minister Mark Butler and the country’s chief medical officer Paul Kelly admitted that ‘millions’ more Australians would be affected in the coming weeks.

Australia is recording around 30,000 daily Covid infections and daily deaths topped 100 last week for only the second time in the pandemic.

While BA.4 and BA.5 – which are also behind the new surge of Covid in the UK – are milder than previous strains, they are wreaking havoc on Australia’s care homes.

More than 1,000 social care facilities have been hit by the outbreak during the latest wave, putting the elderly and most vulnerable at risk.

Frontline workers in care homes and hospitals are also sick or in isolation as high infection rates put more pressure on services.

About 2,000 Australian troops have been ordered into care homes to address staff shortages.

Australians who cannot earn a living because they are isolating due to Covid are entitled to a payment of $750 (£430).

Meanwhile, neighboring New Zealand, which also doggedly chased zero Covid earlier in the pandemic, is now suffering record Covid death rates.

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Australia Is Recording Around 30,000 Daily Covid Infections And Daily Deaths Topped 100 Last Week For Only The Second Time In The Pandemic.

Australia Is Recording Around 30,000 Daily Covid Infections And Daily Deaths Topped 100 Last Week For Only The Second Time In The Pandemic.

Australia is recording around 30,000 daily Covid infections and daily deaths topped 100 last week for only the second time in the pandemic.

The weekly death toll from the virus rose to 162 in the seven days ending July 23, compared with 115 in the worst week of the outbreak in March, according to health ministry data.

This means that the country’s current death rate is twice that of the UK and four times that of the US.

Data from Our World in Data, a research platform supported by the University of Oxford, shows that four people are dying from Covid every day in New Zealand.

For comparison, in the darkest days of the pandemic, similar rates in the UK and US were around 19 and 10 respectively.

However, both countries are now reducing the number of deaths.

The UK is recording two deaths per million people every day, despite one in 15 people being infected.

Meanwhile, the US is suffering just one Covid death for every million people, a quarter of the scale seen in New Zealand.

Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease expert at the University of East Anglia, told the Mail Online last week that New Zealand had ‘done better than most countries that initially pursued a zero-covid strategy’ because that point The sight means that many people have good protection against serious illness. and death when restrictions were lifted.

But he noted that hybrid immunity — both being vaccinated and having a previous infection — seems to offer the best protection against severe illness and death.

Professor Hunter said a higher proportion of people in New Zealand had only had two shots and had no prior infection by this month, compared with Britain where most were thought to have had Covid.

He added: ‘I suspect this is contributing to the current death rate in New Zealand as it is twice as high as in the UK.

‘In New Zealand’s first wave, vaccine protection was still good but has now dropped enough that the vast majority of people may have recovered from Covid, increasing the mortality rate.’

Professor Robert Dingwall, a sociologist at Nottingham Trent University and a former government adviser, told MailOnline that experts have long said it is best to judge countries’ responses two years after the actual outbreak.

He said: ‘New Zealand was able to contain the initial waves of infection through strict border controls while other countries developed and tested vaccines.

“Ultimately, however, the country has failed to escape the basic tenets of Covid – that the risk of death is strongly related to age, that vaccination reduces but does not prevent infection, and that the way out of the pandemic is population.” Only through Immunity is acquired by both vaccination and infection.’

10% rise in Covid cases in England… but ‘evidence that epidemic is on the rise’

According to official data, the spread of Covid in England is slowing down.

Analysts behind the country’s most reliable surveillance project, run by the Office for National Statistics, estimated 3.14 million people were infected on July 13 – just 9% more than the previous week’s estimate. For comparison, the increase implemented last Friday was about one-third.

Cautious statisticians said it was ‘premature to say’ if the tide was peaking.

But public health experts claim the worst is likely over, noting that mass testing surveys are ‘always two or three weeks behind the epidemic curve’.

Separate figures from NHS England show that admissions actually started to fall 10 days ago. Analysis by the Mail Online yesterday showed that rates are now falling in every area.

Despite the positive signs, some scientists have urged ministers to reintroduce the mask mandate and work from home rules.

Others have even raised the possibility of limits on social gatherings, similar to the draconian policies adopted during the dark ages of the pandemic.