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Australia: Qld records 10 deaths, 15,050 virus cases

Victoria records 37,169 new COVID-19 cases, 25 deaths, as new virus rules take effect

  Victoria records 37,169 new COVID-19 cases, 25 deaths, as new virus rules take effect New vaccine mandates and eased isolation requirements have kicked in for critical workers, while new restrictions apply for hospitality and healthcare settings.The figures bring the official number of active coronavirus cases in Victoria to 221,726. Of the new cases, 20,326 were recorded through PCR testing, while 16,843 were self-reported after rapid antigen testing.

Another 10 people have died in Queensland's COVID-19 wave as the state records 15,050 new cases and quarantine requirements relax for international arrivals.

The first quarantine-free international flights arrived in Brisbane as Qld recorded 10 virus deaths. © Jono Searle/AAP PHOTOS The first quarantine-free international flights arrived in Brisbane as Qld recorded 10 virus deaths.

The latest deaths include one person in their 40s and one in their 50s, and come as the state's hospital admissions for COVID-19 climb from 855 to 884.

Chief Health Officer John Gerrard said ICU numbers had dropped marginally from 54 to 52, and signs that the virus wave had peaked over the border in NSW were positive for the state.

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He remains confident Queensland's peak will come about two weeks after NSW, and said areas including the Gold Coast and Brisbane would be among the earliest.

"The modelling used for Queensland is very similar to the modelling used for New South Wales," he said on Saturday.

"It could be as early as the next few days...when the pandemic will peak on the Gold Coast, and then metropolitan Brisbane is likely to follow," he said.

The peak is not the end of the wave, but the high point of transmission and potentially hospital admissions, Dr Gerrard said.

Case numbers are likely to fall at "about the same rate" as they have risen, however the re-opening of schools could see another peak in transmission.


Video: Queensland records deadliest day of pandemic (ABC NEWS)

Epidemiologist says Covid-19 cases could soon plateau

  Epidemiologist says Covid-19 cases could soon plateau Covid-19 infections could soon begin to plateau despite a rising number of cases across Australia, several leading epidemiologists have claimed. University of Melbourne physicist Dr Christopher Billington said NSW was fast approaching the peak of its current outbreak despite the state reporting a record 92,264 cases on Thursday.'Despite how messy the data recently [has been], any reasonable assumptions about what fraction of infections are being captured lead to the same conclusion: that the virus will soon no longer have enough potential hosts remaining to continue to spread with positive growth,' he said.

"I just want to emphasise that this is very definitely positive news from New South Wales, that they have clearly reached the peak of the pandemic wave..and they're modelling is very similar to ours," he said.

Speaking from the Brisbane International Airport Terminal, tourism minister Stirling Hinchliffe said the latest deaths were "terrible news" for family and friends.

The first quarantine-free international flights arrived in Brisbane on Saturday, with passengers initially being made up of returning citizens, students and workers.

Quarantine is still required for unvaccinated arrivals.

It signals the start of a "slow rebuild" for the state's international tourism industry, Mr Hinchliffe said.

"I'm very hopeful, with markets like Singapore to start with, that we do see tourists return," he said.

"(It) will be a matter for the Australian Government, about when when we open up to some of those different markets."

Brisbane airport has seen about 500 international travellers per day during the pandemic, with double that number expected on Saturday.

"It's still a long way to go before we reach the 17,000 we had before COVID, but we will get there," Brisbane Airport CEO Gert-Jan de Graaff said.

Qld has 11 virus deaths, 9,546 new cases .
Qld's virus death toll has increased by 11 as the state records another 9,546 COVID-19 cases and a double dose vaccination rate of just under 90 per cent.Tuesday's deaths were people aged between their 50s and 90s, none of whom had received a booster jab.

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