Jul 11, 2021 - World

Australia reports first COVID death of 2021 amid growing cases

 Premier Gladys Berejiklian and NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant speak during a press conference on June 24, 2021 in Sydney, Australia.
State Premier Gladys Berejiklian and New South Wales Chief Health Officer Dr. Kerry Chant speak during a press conference on June 24, 2021 in Sydney, Australia. Photo: Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images

Australian officials on Sunday announced the country's first COVID-related death this year, and a record 77 new daily cases of the virus in New South Wales, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: Australia has generally fared better in controlling the virus than many developed countries. But it's had a harder time combating the highly-infectious Delta variant, amid a slow vaccine rollout, Reuters writes.

Details: The death, which is the first from a locally-acquired infection since December, was a woman in her 90s. It comes amid a growing number of infections for the already-locked-down nation.

  • The country recorded its previous 2021 record high infections — 50 cases — on Saturday.
  • "I'll be shocked if it's less than 100 this time tomorrow, of additional new cases," said State Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

What's next: The city was supposed to come out of its three-week lockdown on July 16, but Berejiklian told reporters "everybody can tell it's highly unlikely at this stage."

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