‘Concerning’ trend in Victoria spike

 

Victoria has seen another spike in coronavirus cases, with the state experiencing six days of double-digit growth in cases.

Health Minister Jenny Mikakos confirmed state had recorded 16 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number to 1847.

Five previous cases have been removed due to duplication.

"Of the 16 new cases, six are linked to known outbreaks, four are detected in hotel quarantine, five have been detected through routine testing, and one is under investigation," Ms Mikakos said.

"There are also 222 cases believed to be related to community transmission, and that is an increase of 12 since yesterday."

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Ms Mikakos said though no new deaths had been recorded, there had been a "concerning" increase in the number of virus-related hospitalisations.

"We currently have nine patients in hospital, including two in intensive care. So just to make the point there that the number of people in hospital has gone up from just four a few days ago, which is always concerning," she said.

Victorian Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos announced another spike in Victorian coronavirus cases. Picture: James Ross/AAP
Victorian Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos announced another spike in Victorian coronavirus cases. Picture: James Ross/AAP

 

The state's COVID-19 case numbers are now the highest they've been in more than two months.

Of the new cases two have been linked to the Stamford Plaza Hotel in Melbourne, taking that outbreak total to 14.

Another two cases have been linked to teachers at Alban Vale primary school in Caroline Springs, bringing the total number of cases linked to the school to three.

"A teacher has tested positive and second teacher tested positive yesterday. He was infectious in June so the school is currently closed while contact tracing and testing is under way," Ms Mikakos said.

"An investigation by the public health team is looking at whether these cases at the school are linked to the Keilor Downs family outbreak as some students at the school are close contacts of that outbreak, but the testing of some of those close contact is in the process of being under way."

 

The Stamford Plaza Hotel has been closed due to an outbreak of COVID-19. Picture: Ian Currie
The Stamford Plaza Hotel has been closed due to an outbreak of COVID-19. Picture: Ian Currie

Two cases have been linked to the H&M store in Northland Shopping Centre in Preston, bringing the total number of cases there to four.

"One new case is staff member who tested positive on Friday. The other new case is a third staff member who did not work at the store while infectious. This third staff member attended the Black Lives Matter protests in the city on Saturday 6 June, but is thought not to have acquired the virus at the protest," the health minister said.

A toddler who attended Great Beginnings Nursery in Reservoir has also tested positive for COVID-19.

The childcare centre will close today for deep cleaning and contact tracing is underway.

Victoria state has seen a sharp increase in cases over the past week, with fears it is facing a second wave sadly looking more and more possible.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has blamed the spike in cases on large family gatherings and people not following social distancing measures.

"We have had cases of people gathering in large numbers, everybody at their home or another family member's home or a close friend's home, even though they had been told to isolate in their own home," he said on Saturday.

"It is unacceptable that families anywhere in our state can, just because they want this to be over, pretend that it is. It is not over."

From today Victorians will be living under tighter restrictions. Picture: AAP Image/Luis Ascui.
From today Victorians will be living under tighter restrictions. Picture: AAP Image/Luis Ascui.

WHAT RESTRICTIONS ARE CHANGING?

From today home gatherings are being limited from 10 to just five people in Victoria, while outdoor gatherings have been restricted from 20 to 10 people.

Limits on people the number of people at pubs, restaurants and cafes had been due to lift to 50 patrons from today, however, will continue to be restricted to just 20 people.

Private worship or small religious ceremonies will also be restricted to just 20 people plus those "reasonably required" to run the ceremony.

Real estate auctions, auction houses, open houses and community facilities will also continue to be limited to just 20 people.

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A gym instructor is seen cleaning workout equipment prior to a group training class at Hiscoes Gym in Sydney. Picture: AAP Image/Bianca De Marchi.
A gym instructor is seen cleaning workout equipment prior to a group training class at Hiscoes Gym in Sydney. Picture: AAP Image/Bianca De Marchi.

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WILL GYMS STILL OPEN?

Gyms, indoor sporting venues, community sport for kids and non-contact adult sport will still go ahead with their planned resumption in Victoria today.

Like NSW, Victorian indoor sporting venues will only be allowed to have up 20 people at a time and a maximum of 10 people per group activity.

Cinemas and concert venues can also still reopen from today, but will only be allowed to have up to 20 people.

HOW LONG WILL THESE RESTRICTIONS STAY IN PLACE?

According to the Victorian Premier these restrictions will be revisited in three week's time and will stay in place until at least July 12.

Mr Andrews said he hasn't ruled out the possibility of further restrictions being reintroduced if new cases continue to climb.

"Three weeks of course being the full life cycle of this virus, where we think that we get the best and clearest picture of exactly what's going on out in the community," he told reporters.

HOW SERIOUSLY WILL NEW RESTRICTIONS BE ENFORCED?

Very seriously, according to Mr Andrews, who said on Saturday authorities will go door-to-door to make sure rules are being followed.

"I want to make it really clear that we have seen some families who have not done as they have been asked," he said.

"We have seen some families who perhaps through a sense of frustration and their hope that this is over, they have pretended that it is.

"I am not happy to have to confirm this but we will go door-to-door getting the message out there to communities across the state and that these restrictions are there for everyone.

"We will also go door-to-door not just in getting good public health advice out to people, we'll go door-to-door if we have to make sure people are doing the right thing."

Originally published as 'Concerning' trend in Victoria spike


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