AUSTRALIA: What you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak
By CBS News Staff WriterCAMBRIDGE, Mass.
(CBS) — AUSTRAILERS are being advised to be extra cautious with the number of coronaviruses circulating in the region.
Australia’s Health Minister, Sussan Ley, said Monday that the country had seen more than 15,000 cases and more than 60,000 deaths, but she said it is still too early to say whether the number is actually higher.
“We don’t know yet how many people we have here, but we do know that the coronavalvirus has hit a higher peak than we have in the last two or three weeks,” Ley said.
“So I would like to see that we can continue to monitor the situation.”
The Australian Federal Police said they were monitoring the spread of coronavalviruses in the country, but were not prepared to put any more numbers on the spread.
“There’s a lot of information we have on the current situation and the next few weeks, but that’s still too soon to say if there are more cases and deaths, particularly with the fact that we have a new coronaviral strain which we’ve seen in the past couple of weeks,” the AFP’s Commissioner Andrew Colvin said.
In Victoria, health officials said coronavids are also circulating in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne, and have been linked to the spread in the city of Melbourne.
Authorities in Brisbane said they have received more than 100 confirmed cases of coronovirus, but have so far received only 24 death certificates.
In Melbourne, health authorities said they had received more cases of the virus than they had been expecting and that there are now over 4,000 people in isolation.
“Our response is to be on the lookout for any additional infections that may emerge in the community, and the most common way to be identified is through contact tracing,” Victoria’s Health Commissioner said.
“We are aware that the current rate of new infections is around 400 per week.”
Ley said coronoviral infections in Australia are increasing dramatically in the aftermath of the coronas coronavid coronavacide, the first vaccine for the virus, that has been available for nearly three years.
“What I can tell you is that we’ve had a really significant increase in the number and intensity of cases, and we have seen an increase in transmission of the new strain of coronAV-19,” Ley told ABC Radio Melbourne.
“That has to be taken into account when you look at the total number of people who have been infected.”
In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that more than 10,000 Americans have died from the virus since the outbreak began in October.ABC News’ Brian Murphy contributed to this report.