Two die as Hunter New England records over 1600 new cases

By Nick Bielby

Two people from the Coalfields were among the 11 people who died with COVID-19 across NSW on Monday.

It comes as the region recorded another 1661 cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on January 10 - taking the total number of active infections in the district to 24,146.

Two women aged in their 80s - one from Cessnock, the other from Muswellbrook - died in the 24-hour period, Hunter New England Health said on Tuesday morning.

There are 106 people in hospital and nine patients in intensive care.

The Newcastle local government area recorded the most new cases on Monday (370), followed by Lake Macquarie (342), Maitland (210), Mid Coast (148), Cessnock (138), Port Stephens (131), Tamworth (100), Muswellbrook (65) and Singleton (46).

Then came Upper Hunter (46), Narrabri (19), Dungog (11), Inverell (10), Gunnedah (9), Liverpool Plains (6), Armidale (5), Gwydir and Moree Plains (4), and Tenterfield and Uralla (1).

It comes as NSW recorded 11 deaths and 25,870 new cases on Monday.

There are 315,785 active COVID-19 cases in NSW.

Picture: Marina Neil

Meanwhile, the NSW Nurses and Midwives' Association (NSWNMA) is calling on Prime Minister Scott Morrison to urgently increase resources in the aged care sector.

"During the Delta outbreak last year, COVID-19 positive residents were transferred to local public hospitals to minimise cross infection and to ensure acute care needs were met. We also often saw public sector resources sent into the aged care facilities to achieve the same outcome. This is currently not the case," acting general secretary Shaye Candish said.

"Our members in aged care are reporting a staffing crisis, lack of access to suitable PPE, substandard infection control practices, and with many residents and staff still awaiting their booster.

"Some aged care facilities are being forced to ration rapid antigen tests, only using them every 72 hours."

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