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NSW has 260 COVID-19 cases, two deaths

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NSW has confirmed 260 cases of COVID-19 and two deaths as Queensland prepares to welcome fully vaccinated travellers from next week.

Tuesday’s cases came from 58,706 tests in the 24 hours to 8pm on Monday.

The state’s adult vaccination rate is increasing slowly with 94.7 per cent of those 16 and older having had their first dose, while 92.8 per cent have had both.

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NSW chief health officer Kerry Chant said the numbers were “inching incredibly slowly upwards towards our aim of getting that 95 per cent double-dose vaccination”.

More than 81 per cent of teens aged 12 to 15 have had one vaccine dose and 77.2 per cent are fully jabbed.

Dr Chant urged parents to use the summer holidays to get teens vaccinated, saying “it will be really important to have those high vaccination coverages going into next year” .

Meanwhile, NSW Health is monitoring a local cluster of the Omicron variant, with 14 cases linked to a school and climbing gym in Sydney’s west and south-west. They are among 25 confirmed cases of the new strain in NSW so far.

Dr Chant warned cases of the variant would continue to climb.

“It is expected that our numbers linked to this cluster will rise as further results are confirmed,” she said on Monday.

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Meanwhile, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has promised tough border rules will be relaxed, with fully vaccinated travellers from hotspots welcome in sunshine state from Monday.

Travellers will have to show proof of a negative test taken within three days of arrival. Those coming from hotspots must also get another test on day five of their visit.

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