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‘More lives lost’: Health Minister’s grim prediction

Health Minister Greg Hunt has issued a dire warning for Australians as coronavirus continues to wreak havoc in Victoria and creep into NSW. Speaking on the Today show, Mr Hunt said there would be “more lives lost” to the highly contagious virus – just one day after the nation hit 10,000 cases.“I think if we…

Health Minister Greg Hunt has issued a dire warning for Australians as coronavirus continues to wreak havoc in Victoria and creep into NSW.

Speaking on the Today show, Mr Hunt said there would be “more lives lost” to the highly contagious virus – just one day after the nation hit 10,000 cases.

“I think if we are honest there will be more lives lost,” he said.

“There will be more people admitted to ICU and more on ventilation. As we speak, there are approximately 90 people in hospital, 27 in ICU and 21 on ventilation, on the figures that the national incident centre has provided this morning.”

Australia’s COVID total is now 10,251 cases. Of those, 2308 cases are classified as active and 7835 people have recovered.

The national death toll stands at 110. NSW is responsible for 49 of those, Victoria 26, Tasmania, 13, WA, 9, Queensland, 6, SA, 4 and ACT 3.

Two of those deaths, a man and a woman both in their 80s, were reported out of Victorian hospitals on Tuesday evening.

Mr Hunt said the science behind treating coronavirus was continuing to evolve, and improvements had been seen in patients just from changing the way they laid down.

“We are seeing new treatments such as which are available in Australia, new means of actually helping patients that are in ICU, as simple as the positioning of the person and the way they are lying in the bed,” he said.

“But above all else, the thing that will most protect us is helping to slow and stop the spread. That’s our fundamental defence.”

On Monday, the Government released another five million face masks from the national stockpile.

Four million will be provided for the aged care and home care system and one million will go to primary healthcare workers.

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