Gladys Berejiklian warns Australians will have to keep wearing masks and socially distancing even after 80 per cent of the country is fully vaccinated.
The NSW premier said until the highly contagious Delta variant of the virus is gone, some restrictions will still be enforced.
These include mask wearing in varying circumstances, social distancing, and mandatory QR codes for businesses - with no end in sight.
Due to the infectiousness of the Delta variant, and slow roll out of vaccinations within Australia, it is likely it could take several months to reach 80 per cent.
'One thing is very clear, until we get to at least, you know, 80 per cent of our vaccination rates, we'll have some level of restriction,' she said on Thursday.
'It doesn't necessarily mean stay at home, but it means some level of restriction.'
'Social distancing, hand hygiene, mask wearing in certain circumstances, will be a part of life for us until the strain of Covid goes.'
The Delta variant dying out could take years, though it was not clear if Ms Berejiklian meant that, or just getting to zero cases in NSW or Australia.
She said while there would still be some restrictions residents would be able to live much 'freer' including having the potential to travel internationally.
Ms Berejiklian said to get there, more people needed to be vaccinated and urged those considering getting the jab to do so immediately.
'It's not until we hit 70 or 80 per cent that we can live life as freely as we like with Covid,' she said.
'Even then, social distancing, mask wearing, QR codes, will be a part of life.'
The call for residents to roll up their sleeves came after a worrying day of record new local cases in NSW.© Provided by Daily Mail (
The state recorded 262 new infections overnight and five more deaths.
Ms Berejiklian said four of the five NSW residents to die from the virus in the past 24 hours were not vaccinated. The fifth received only one dose of the AstraZeneca jab.
Three of those who died were in their 60s, while one was in their 70s and the other was in their 80s. The death toll from the city's latest outbreak of the highly contagious Delta strain now stands at 21.
NSW Health said at least 45 of the new cases were infectious in the community meanwhile infections have also been detected in Newcastle and the Hunter region.
The premier said Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Port Stephens, Cessnock, Dungog, Singleton and Muswellbrook will now go into a week-long lockdown.
Residents in those local councils will face the same strict stay-at-home orders as five million residents across Sydney, who are in lockdown until at least August 28.
Source : https://www.msn.com/en-au/news/australia/masks-and-social-distancing-will-stay-after-80-per-cent-vaccinated/ar-AAMXg6w663