NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian says COVID-19 infections are expected to peak in the next two weeks after the state recorded 1,431 new cases and 12 deaths.
Friday’s numbers were the highest daily infection figures ever recorded by an Australian jurisdiction.
The 12 deaths represented the highest number recorded in NSW in a day.
“The next fortnight is likely to be our worst in terms of the number of cases,” she said.
“September and October will be the most challenging because we are going [to be] dealing with extra hospitalisations and extra ICU hospitalisations.
“But we’re also going through both the exciting but challenging time of opening up.”
Ms Berejiklian said her government would next week release modelling that showed how many people it expected to end up in hospital with COVID-19 in September and October.
The Premier said the next few weeks would not be a “rosy stretch” — the case figures could be “scary” and health system would be stretched.
“I don’t want people to be concerned by that because that is what is in our pandemic plan. That is what we have planned and prepared for,” she said.
One of the 12 fatalities was an unvaccinated woman in her 30s in south-west Sydney who died at home on September 1.
She was tested for COVID-19 on August 31.
NSW deputy chief health officer Marianne Gale said investigations were under way into the source of her infection.
The other 11 deaths were people in their 70s, 80s and 90s.
One of the fatalities was a 70-year-old man who was a resident at the St George Aged Care Centre in Bexley, where he contracted the virus.