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New daily case numbers of COVID-19 are expected to soar into the tens of thousands by early in 2022 as the virus circulates freely among the 95% fully vaccinated population. 

Accepting high case numbers was always the plan. Through weakened mutated variants, vaccine protection, medications and some social restrictions, the idea is that the virus will morph into one similar to the flu. 

But what remains muddy is the long-term effects, known as long COVID. Before vaccines were readily available, many abroad complained of fatigue and body aches, depression and loss of taste for months after recovering. Up to 20,000 Australians may have already developed long COVID. Some could suffer symptoms for a year -- although the impact vaccines will have is still not known.