Australia Covid live update: Victoria and SA lockdowns expected to end; two more deaths in NSW

Hello and welcome to Tuesday! (Oh my, it’s only Tuesday.)

Unfortunately, there is some tragic news to start the day.

The death toll from this latest Delta wave of coronavirus has reached double digits, with NSW Health reporting two more deaths from Covid-related illness.

They confirmed a woman in her 80s had died at her home in Pendle Hill in Sydney’s west on Monday afternoon, while a man, also in his 80s, died at Campbelltown hospital.

Those reading the blog from Melbourne today are no doubt on edge, as they wait to hear if lockdown will lift at midnight tonight. It’s expected that the strictest social distancing laws will be lifted, but the state’s pathway out of lockdown will be cautious and incremental.

Premier Daniel Andrews has already flagged masks will likely remain compulsory in some settings, while health minister Martin Foley told reporters on Monday “nothing has yet been finalised”.

He said the state was “on the right track” but authorities wanted to base their decision on the most up-to-date and accurate data.

They usually hold their Covid press conferences around 11-11.30am.

Speaking of easing restrictions, South Australian premier Steven Marshall says the state’s week-long lockdown will end at one minute past midnight on Wednesday morning, provided there are no further “unlinked” coronavirus cases.

Masks will still be required in high-risk settings, such as aged care centres, in medical services and on public transport. All food and drink consumption must be while seated, and dancing and singing remain banned. Family gatherings will be limited to 10 people, although weddings and funerals can have up to 50.

OK, with that, why don’t we jump into the day!

If there is something you reckon I’ve missed or think should be in the blog but isn’t, shoot me a message on Twitter @MatildaBoseley.

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