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Australian state sees record cases, lab sends false results

SYDNEY, Australia (AP) -- Australia's largest state reported a record number COVID-19 new cases on Sunday. This was in addition to a sharp rise in hospitalizations. Meanwhile, thousands of people were being isolated at home after contracting it or having contact with someone who has.

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Australian state sees record cases, lab sends false results

The major laboratory in Sydney is located in New South Wales. It stated that 400 people had actually tested positive for COVID-19 after they were informed the day before. According to the lab's medical director, those individuals were being contacted to inform them of the error.

"An emergency team is currently investigating the root cause of this error, which is believed be human error. Anthony Dodds, SydPath's medical director, said that they sincerely regret this error.

New South Wales pharmacists and doctors have reported that they are short of vaccine doses due to a rush for shots sparked by concerns about the omicron variant.

New South Wales recorded 6,394 new infections, an increase of 6 288 from a day earlier. The state has seen an increase in cases over the last two weeks, but hospitalizations are still behind the new infections.

More than 70% of Australian cases are caused by the omicron coronavirus variant. However, New South Wales doesn't routinely perform genome testing to determine the variant. Brad Hazzard, the State Health Minister, stated Sunday that omicron was widespread.

Hazzard stated that "we would expect that pretty much everybody in New South Wales will get omicron at some point." "If we all get omicron, it's best to have our booster and full vaccines.

Officials from the health department reported 458 cases in state hospitals, an increase of 25% over the 388 that was reported the previous day. In New South Wales, there were 52 patients in intensive care.

Victoria, the nation's second-most populous state, had 1,608 COVID-19 new cases and two deaths Sunday. There were 374 people in hospitals including 77 in intensive.

Victoria saw more than 30,000 people spend Christmas alone, unable or unwilling to share the joy with their loved ones. About half of those were active cases who had contracted the virus during the days leading to Christmas.

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