25 June 2022

Territory records 1116 new COVID-19 infections as BA.5 variant predicted to drive higher caseloads

| Lottie Twyford
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COVID testing clinic

ACT Health’s latest weekly epidemiological report predicts case numbers will increase due to the BA.5 variant. Photo: ACT Health.

The ACT has reported 1116 new COVID-19 infections in the 24 hours to 8 pm last night as the Territory’s health directorate warns an increase in case numbers is expected.

ACT Health’s latest weekly epidemiological report said an increase in case numbers would likely be associated with the spread of the BA.5 subvariant of Omicron.

While the BA.2 variant remains the dominant variant, around 22 per cent of all sequenced cases in the ACT in the last week were BA.5. Last week 20 per cent of all cases were BA.5.

ACT Health is sequencing around 5 per cent of all cases.

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Last week, NSW Health warned BA.4 and BA.5 sub-variants would become the dominant variants within the coming weeks in that state.

There is a concern that people could become re-infected with the sub-variants even if they have previously been infected with other lineages of the virus.

The report also noted the number of people reporting a second COVID-19 infection is increasing.

In the week covered by the report (13-19 June), 2.2 per cent of all reported cases were second infections. In the previous report, it was 1.8 per cent.

In total, 1085 people have now reported multiple episodes of COVID-19. ACT Health anticipates this number will increase as immunity wanes and new variants and sub-variants emerge.

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Throughout the week, 6064 new cases were reported compared to 4987 cases in the previous week. The seven-day rolling mean also increased from 650-750 a day to 700-800 cases a day.

Cases increased in every age group and test positivity remained high – between 22 and 23 per cent.

Thirty-two people between the ages of two and 89 were admitted to hospital throughout the week with an average age of 56 years.

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With the 1116 (641 PCR and 475 RAT) cases recorded overnight, there are now 6089 active infections in the Territory.

A total of 152,199 COVID-19 cases have been recorded since the pandemic began in March 2020.

Yesterday, the ACT reported 1038 new COVID-19 infections.

As of yesterday, the double-dose vaccination rate for the ACT’s five-plus population was 97.3 per cent and 77.2 per cent of residents aged 16 and older have received a booster.

Of ACT residents aged five to 11, 68.7 per cent had received two doses of vaccine.

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Interstate, NSW has reported 21 deaths overnight and 8266 new cases of COVID-19.

Victoria has reported 24 deaths overnight and 6634 cases of COVID-19.

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