As a Sydneysider, I listen to the 11 am Covid 19 updates. On Friday, Sydney had 644 new covid 19 cases. Although I knew Sydney’s lockdown would be extended (cases rising every day) from 22 August, twelve high-risk local government areas in Greater Sydney need to comply with harsher restrictions.
What are the changes?
A stay-at-home curfew takes effect on Monday 22 August from 9 pm – 5 am for residents in the 12 LGA’s.
We can’t travel 5 km from home unless we’re authorised workers.
Authorised workers will need to apply for permits to leave for work.
If you are an authorised worker, you must get vaccinated by 30 August.
Residents are only allowed out for 1 hour of exercise a day.
What is our government’s answer to easing restrictions? The Vaccination Rainbow. Get vaccinated and we'll lessen restrictions.
Do you feel constantly bombarded about vaccination? There are constant Ads on TV and politicians giving their daily updates. Do you watch social media and the theories about the covid vaccination? It can be pretty confusing. So, I wanted to find out what the implications of higher vaccination rates have on a Country?
22.5% of Australia’s population is fully vaccinated compared to 61.5% in the UK, 64.5% in Spain, and 65.3% in Canada.
The UK is battling its third wave of Covid 19 which peaked in June and July. An article published in The Conversation reports after rising cases, hospital admissions, and deaths in June and July covid cases have dropped in the UK. Nature.com reported the drop in cases has scientists perplexed. The end of the Euro football (reduction in crowds), end of the school term (less contact with others), and mass vaccinations are contributing factors. Against modelling scenarios, the UK opened its sports and entertainment venues in July.
Spain is facing its fifth wave of covid. APN News published an article in July, Spain's covid cases had surged to 25,000 a day. A month later, The New York Times reports there are on average 11,446 cases a day. It appears cases have decreased by 44%. Spain has one of the highest rates of Covid 19 deaths in the EU. In May, the government lifted all restrictions allowing travellers from the UK. There was a feeling covid was disappearing. Students held their usual end-of-school-year parties. At an end-of-school-year party in Majorca, 600 people returned a positive covid test. Experts say lifting restrictions for travellers and huge parties contributed to the rapid spread of the delta variant in Spain. Reuters reports 65% of new cases in Spain are people under 40.
In Canada, multiple provinces have reported new covid cases. On 21 August, the province of Ontario reported 650 new cases (it highest since June), 663 new cases in British Columbia (BC), and Alberta 749 new cases. The Scientific Director of Ontario’s Covid Advisory Committee said he believes this is Canada’s fourth wave. It’s the unvaccinated getting covid with 72% of cases in Ontario not vaccinated. Today, the province of British Columbia introduced restrictions including mandatory masks in public, 5 people can visit homes, and 50 people can attend outdoor gatherings. 74.3% of British Columbia are fully vaccinated. Interestingly, British Columbia’s population is 70% fully vaccinated, but they will not move to lessen restrictions in September as planned due to the number of cases.
When NSW vaccination rates increase to 70%, we are told there will be greater freedoms. Will NSW’s roadmap mimic the UK? Will we open our sports and entertainment venues and be able to attend concerts and sports events again? Will, we open freely with covid regardless of the numbers like Spain, or will we continue to live with restrictions like Canada? Only time will tell.
The Covid vaccine is a tool to keeping people out of hospitals and reducing the number of deaths. Whether you take a vaccine or not is your choice. And, if you are discussing covid remember, be kind to people who discuss vaccination it's at the forefront of our minds in our current environment.
Let me know if you've been thinking about what life looks like with fewer restrictions. 8 weeks of lockdown has me dreaming of my Utopia.