Gladys Berejiklian to stop giving daily NSW COVID-19 updates ahead of predicted peak

The premier has indicated she expects NSW's current COVID-19 crisis to peak in the coming weeks but pledged on Friday "I will turn up when I need to".

NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian at a press conference in July.

NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian at a press conference in July. Source: Getty Images

New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Health Minister Brad Hazzard will stop giving daily coronavirus updates ahead of the anticipated peak in the state's deepening Delta variant outbreak.

Ms Berejiklian made the surprise announcement on Friday morning, as the state .

The premier has previously indicated she expected NSW's COVID-19 crisis to peak in the coming weeks.

"Sunday will be the last day we officially do a press conference in this way but, from Monday at 11am, [NSW] Health will provide a daily health update. Myself and Minister Hazzard, or any other relevant minister, will present to the community on a needs basis," she told reporters in Sydney.

The announcement came a day after Ms Berejiklian and so-called "roadmap to freedom".

The move triggered an immediate backlash on social media, including from NSW Labor leader Chris Minns.

"We need to be hearing from the Premier every day," he tweeted.

The announcement also prompted extra questioning from journalists at Friday's press conference.

"I will turn up when I need to but to expect the leader of the government indefinitely to do this every day means that I am not doing my job properly," Ms Berejiklian responded.

"I can assure the people of this state, and they can judge me on my record, whenever I need to speak directly to the public, I absolutely will."

She also rejected suggestions she was trying to hide from the public and said NSW has "the most transparent information of any state".

"Apart from repeating the numbers that [NSW] Health repeats, we have to make sure we have something important to say and I think people understand the health messaging now," Ms Berejiklian said.

There are currently 1,156 patients in NSW hospitals. Of those, 207 are in intensive care and 89 are on ventilators.

The nine new deaths reported in the 24 hours to 8pm on Thursday include a man in his 30s, a woman in her 40s, two people in their 50s, two in their 60s, two in their 70s and a woman in her 80s.

2 min read
Published 10 September 2021 at 12:02pm
By Evan Young