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Covid-19 in Australia

see also:


  • population of Australia 2020:
    • 25.5 million
    • NSW: 7.4 million
    • Victoria: 6.4 million
    • Queensland: 5.1 million
  • age profile
  • pre-Covid19 healthcare resources
    • 3.5 medical doctors per 1,000 population (Italy had 4 doctors)
    • 3.9 hospital beds per 1,000 population (Italy had 3.4 beds)
      • seasonal influenza normally adds an extra 5,000 - 30,000 hospital admissions pa which is sufficient to severely strain hospital resources over winter
      • if 25% of Australians become infected with Covid-19, hospital admissions would rise by 1.2 million
    • there are 2,229 ICU beds in Australia, 874 in NSW and only 476 in Vic, making it 8.9 ICU beds per 100,000 across Australia (Italy has 12.5, Japan and South Korea have triple the number of ICU beds per capita of Australia, while Germany had 34 but expanding to 49!)
      • there are normally around 160,000 ICU admissions each year in Australia and seasonal influenza adds little to that with only and additional 500-2,600pa recently.
        • if 25% of Australians become infected with Covid-19, ICU admissions would need to double to cope but in addition ICU length of stay averages 10 days for Covid-19 cases compared to a usual average of under 4 days.1)

Covid-19 timeline

pre-Australian spread

  • 29th Dec 2019: Chinese authorities identified a cluster of similar cases of pneumonia in the city of Wuhan which was soon to be found to be caused by a new virus SARS-CoV-2, later called Covid-19.
  • 13th Jan: 1st cases confirmed outside of China - Thailand, and on 16th Jan, Japan.
  • 23rd Jan: city of Wuhan, China placed on lockdown

new cases in Australia and counter-measures

  • 25th Jan 2020: 4 confirmed cases in Australia
  • 29th Jan: 9 confirmed cases
  • 6th Feb: 15 confirmed cases
  • 21st Feb: 4 new cases taking it to 19 confirmed
  • 27th Feb: 23 cases
  • 29th Feb: 25 cases
  • 2nd Mar: 32 cases
  • 3rd Mar: 40 cases
  • 4th Mar: 51 cases
  • 5th Mar: 59 cases
  • 7th Mar: 73 cases
  • 10th March 2020: Australia has 100th confirmed case.
  • 11th March 2020: WHO declares pandemic
  • 13th Mar: 198 cases
  • 15th Mar: 297 cases
  • 16th Mar: 1st confirmed cases acquired in Australia without known contacts to overseas travel (NSW cases)
  • 17th Mar: 454 cases
  • 19th Mar: 709 cases
  • 19th March: mass gatherings of more than 100 people indoors and 500 outdoors banned in Australia, resulting in sports being played without crowds, tourist destinations closed.
  • 20th March: Australia bans entry of all non-residents and residents arriving will have to self-isolate for 14 days
  • 21st Mar: 1072 cases
  • 24th Mar: 2050 cases
  • 24th March: WA, SA and NT close borders to eastern states
  • 27th March: peak of daily new confirmed cases acquired overseas
  • 29th March: all residents arriving in Australia enforced quarantine in hotels on arrival for 14 days
  • 29th March: rate of daily increase in new confirmed cases starts to decline - but this is probably due to the massive reduction in international travel as 86% of confirmed cases are overseas acquired or their close contacts, as well as a significant decline in the number where transmission source is under investigation, and thus may NOT be a reflection of control of the community spread which currently falls outside of testing unless they end up in hospital
  • 30th March: Stage 3 social distancing restrictions put in place - no more than 2 people together outside; beaches, outside gyms and playgrounds generally closed;
  • 30th March: Australian acquired confirmed cases without travel contacts rises to 281
  • 1st April: 4763 confirmed cases (2182 in NSW, 968 in Vic, 743 in Qld), 20 deaths;
  • 13th April: local new cases substantially fallen in most states except Tas; only 5 per day in Vic. and around 12 per day in NSW.
  • 20th April: minimal new cases (20 on 20th Apr) in Australia apart from repatriation and cruise ship cases; Fed Govt lifts ban on elective surgery. Virgin Australia airline goes into voluntary administration as Fed Govt refuses to offer $1.2b hand out to keep it running. Qld and NSW plan to open beaches for limited use.
  • 23rd April: Ruby Princess cruise ship departs Port Kembla after repatriating over 500 crew members by air flight from Sydney. It is thought 10% of Australian confirmed cases could be linked to this ship including 23 deaths. It is thought to account for 20% of Sth Aust and ACT cases, 13% of NSW cases, at least 10% of Tas and WA cases, 8% of Qld cases, 7% of NT cases and 2% of Victorian cases. 1st docked in Sydney on 19th March when 2,700 passengers were allegedly approved by NSW Health to disembark despite more than a dozen on the ship being tested for Covid.2) 3)
  • 24th April: 6650 confirmed cases; daily average new cases around 15/day for past 5 days.
  • 1st May: 4 million Australians have downloaded the COVIDSafe tracing app in the 1st week after its launch as some states start to lift social distancing restrictions
  • 9th May: most of new cases in May are in Victoria related to an outbreak at the Cedar meat processing plant
  • 10th May: Fed Govt announces stages for easing of restrictions and most States announce their easing of restrictions
  • 26th May: new 2nd wave commences in Victoria
  • June: 5400 overseas visitors arrived for the month of June;
  • July: NSW clusters begins at:
    • a funeral service in a Western Sydney church when a +ve lady attended without realising she was infected
    • Thai Rock restaurant
  • Aug: Victoria's 2nd wave peaks after Stage 4 restrictions introduced in Melbourne. NZ commmences 2nd wave after having “eliminated” the virus for 100 days.
  • 15th Aug: total of 23,035 confirmed coronavirus cases and 379 deaths = 14.9 deaths per million people.
  • Nov 2020: Victorian outbreak eliminated.
  • Dec 2020: NSW northern beaches outbreak spreads to Victoria via a Black Rock Thai restaurant but seems to be well contained with extensive contact tracing and asymptomatic testing.
  • Jan 2021: outbreak of UK strain in Brisbane;
  • 21st Aug 2021: NSW records 825 new cases easily beating Victoria's 2020 peak of 725 new daily cases; Victoria hits a 2021 daily high of 67 new cases with 17 in Shepparton;
  • 2nd Sept 2021: NSW 1288 new cases, 957 in hospital, 160 in ICU, 64 on ventilators; 2.5m fully vaccinated; Vic outbreak now seems out of control due to compliance fatigue with new cases hitting 176 despite prolonged lockdown, 61 in hospital, 20 in ICU 13 on ventilators, 2 deaths at home. 1.9m fully vaccinated;
  • 4th Sept: NSW 1533 new cases, 1041 in hospital, 173 in ICU, 62 on ventilators;
  • 16th Oct: NSW reaches 80% double vax target as daily cases fall to around 400 while Vic's daily cases are around 2000
  • 25th Nov: omicron variant start to enter Australia from Sth Africa
  • 1st Dec: 1st mRNA vaccine developed in Australia is announced - phase one trials to start Jan - developed in Victoria by Monash University researchers, pharmaceutical manufacturer IDT Australia and the Doherty Institute.
  • 31st Dec: omicron wave hits most Australian states as 11% have had 3rd vaccine dose:
    • NSW at over 22000 per day, hospitalisations hit 1000, PCR test positivity hits 20% as PCR tests are restricted
    • Vic at over 7000 per day, at least 75% are omicron
    • Qld at over 3500 per day and 112 in hospital
    • SA at over 2000 per day
    • ACT at over 500 per day
    • Tas at over 400 per day
    • NT at nearly 300 active cases
    • WA still below 20 active cases as border remains closed
  • 6th Jan: exponential spread of Omicron continues throughout most states with effective R of 3 in Victoria; NSW reports unsettling alleged case of a death of a previously well man in his 20's who had been double vaxxed.
  • 10th Jan 2022: Australia now has higher per capita rates of 7 day average daily new infections than UK, USA, Canada, Germany, India but not as high as France or Ireland and is struggling with supply chain failures and hospital crises due to staff furloughs
  • Mar 2022, BA.2 Omicron becomes dominant strain with very high infectivity
  • April 2022: NSW took 731 days to officially reach 1 million COVID-19 cases but only a further 75 days to get to 2 million cases, although actual numbers are probably much higher with at least 50% under-reporting. 2500 have died in NSW since the start of the pandemic - 1% of cases with Delta and 0.1% of cases with Omicron thanks to high levels of vaccination.
  • June 2022: BA.4 and BA.5 variants set to become the dominant Omicron variants in NSW

Covid-19 Australian data

covid19_australia.txt · Last modified: 2022/06/17 11:13 by gary1