Three thirty-somethings with no pre-existing health problems are fighting for their lives in hospital with coronavirus.
The patients are spread across hospitals in New South Wales and are among the 35 people in the state who need respirators to breathe.
Nationally, 5,795 people are known to have contracted COVID-19, including 41 who have died. Twelve of those fatalities boarded the ill-fated Ruby Princess cruise ship on March 19.
Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Paul Kelly, said on Monday that the three youths in need of intensive care do not have pre-existing medical conditions and should serve as a warning to the community.
Medical professionals are seen preparing COVID-19 tests for members of the public at the Bondi Beach drive-through COVID-19 testing center on April 6. The test clinic was opened after a cluster of cases was identified in youth in the region
“Those relatively young people [on ventilators]… have no risk factors, which is an important point, “said Professor Kelly.
“This is a disease that is usually mild, but in some cases we have seen and will continue to see people with serious conditions [cases of the] disease.
“This is a wake-up call for all of us,” he said, admitting that most serious cases have been seen in the more “vulnerable people in our society – the elderly and those with chronic diseases.”
Dr. Jeremy McAnulty of NSW Health on Sunday reminded young people that people in their 20s can still experience significant and serious symptoms.
“The largest single age group is people in their twenties, we see the largest numbers,” he said.
Australians – especially young people – have been urged to stay indoors and take social distance measures seriously to slow the spread of the virus, warning authorities that they are not immune to the deadly side effects. Shown on Shelly Beach on April 5
Pictured: a ventilator used to help seriously ill people breathe. Three people in their thirties currently only need a ventilator in NSW because of the coronavirus
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA: 5795
New South Wales: 2637
Western Australia: 460
South Australia: 409
Australian Capital Territory: 96
Northern Territory: 28
TOTAL CASES: 5,795
Professor Kelly said that the significant slowdown in the number of new cases every day shows that Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s “draconian” restrictions have contributed to “smoothing the curve.”
Mr Morrison dismantled the Australian culture of conviviality by closing beaches, pubs, bars, cinemas and gyms and limiting the time allowed to spend outdoors.
He also closed the country’s borders to foreigners and told people not to leave their home unless necessary to slow the spread of the deadly respiratory infection.
Despite the positive signs in Australia, Professor Kelly has been reluctant to celebrate too early and urged people to remain vigilant.
“The peak in daily cases was indeed last week or the week before, right now,” he said Monday.
“Whether that’s the last peak, I can’t really say at this stage, it’s speculation.”
Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly hopes that the peak of the infection has now passed in everyday cases
A woman walks on the beach with her dogs on Duranbah Beach on the Queensland-New South Wales border on Monday, April 6
That said, national leaders and medical experts are now looking at how and when to ease the severe restrictions.
It examines how prepared the health system is for an increase in the number of cases and what effect the lifting of certain measures would have on new case numbers.
“But I would say that people have been extremely willing and able to change the way they live in Australia so far, and I think that will play a role in some of those processes,” said Professor Kelly.
Governments are concerned that over the coming Easter weekend, people will be tempted to break restrictions on movement and social distance rules.
Audience members walk past a sign asking to be ‘responsible’ at Scarborough Beach, Perth, Monday, April 6, after orders to distance themselves socially and stay in as much as possible