THREE out of four new COVID cases in NSW were under 40, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said as the state surpassed 5.2 million vaccinations.
NSW recorded 452 cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Monday, with 152,000 tests.
NSW Health said 129 were linked to known cases or clusters, 105 were household contacts and 24 close contacts.
Investigations are ongoing for 323 regarding the source of infection. 101 were isolated throughout their infectious period, with 24 isolated for part of their infectious period.
Ten new cases in the Hunter took the health district's tally to 130.
Five are in Maitland, three in Lake Macquarie and two in Newcastle. Nine of those are linked to previous cases, with one under investigation.
Six were infectious in the community, three for their entire period and three for part of it.
No cases were linked to aged care in the region.
"Again we are concerned [about the Hunter], but it is improving on recent numbers," deputy premier John Barilaro said.
"Don't be caught up in the AstraZeneca versus Pfizer debate ... I encourage everybody to get vaccinated.
"I don't want to see in the future where regional communities are behind the targets set by the government because of lacklustre effort to get vaccinated."
Hunter New England Health added two new Hunter exposure sites just over an hour before the 11am press conference.
The premier said numbers were likely to continue bouncing around.
"Our key aim is keeping people out of hospital and keeping people alive," she said.
Dubbo, Walgett and western NSW remains "of enormous concern", Ms Berejkilian said.
A fresh case has been detected in Broken Hill.
"There are extra supports being sent to western NSW to ensure we got on top of the cases out there," she said.
Police handed out 579 infringement notices in the first 24 hours of Operation Stay At Home, including to several people linked to alleged parties in Sandgate.
NSW Health's Dr Jeremy McAnulty said "large numbers" of people continued to present to hospital.
"Cases may spring up anywhere in the state, as we've seen, so we all need to be alert and get tested at the mildest of symptoms," he said.
At least 50 were infectious in the community statewide, Ms Berejiklian with a number under investigations.
A woman in her late 70s died at Westmead hospital.
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Ms Berejiklian said the woman had not been vaccinated.
She added that NSW had recorded 5.2 million jabs, putting it "well on its way" to 6 million by the end of August. She said more than half of those over 16 in the state had received at least one dose, which meant the chance of contracting and transmitting the virus was "substantially reduced".
"We're really keen for everybody to look up your suburb to see what the vaccination rate is in your suburb," Ms Berejiklian said.
"Life will be much freer once we get to 70 per cent [fully vaccinated] and 80 per cent [first jab]," Ms Berejiklian said.
"It doesn't mean it will be completely free ... but it will be a lot freer."
Deputy premier John Barilaro and Ms Berejiklian will later today address regional media, the second day of a press conference specifically for areas beyond greater Sydney's borders.
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