Developments in the outbreak
- As of 9 April 2020, Victoria has 1228 total confirmed cases, an increase of 16 since yesterday. 50 people are in hospital, including 13 people in intensive care. 12 people have died. 110 cases have an unknown source of infection, an increase of 9 since yesterday. 806 people have recovered.
- Of the total 1228 cases, there have been 992 in metropolitan Melbourne and 225 in regional Victoria. A number of cases remain under investigation.
- The total number of cases in Australia is currently 6029. That is expected to increase significantly in coming weeks unless people stay at home.
- There have been 157 confirmed cases in healthcare workers, across at least 7 hospitals and 1 radiology clinic.
- Healthcare workers and paramedics who test positive to coronavirus (COVID-19) or are close contacts of confirmed cases can now self-isolate or self-quarantine in free hotel rooms under the Hotels for Heroes program.
- Up-to-date epidemiological data is available on our website.
Updated advice to clinicians
- Clinicians are reminded to test everyone who meets the case definition criteria; especially close contacts and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. There should be no exceptions.
- GPs can email pharmacists copies of Schedule 4 prescriptions for patients who are self-isolating at home. Pharmacists may then be able to arrange home delivery of the medication.
- Deaths due to confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection must be notified to the department as soon as possible. Call 1300 651 160 (24 hours, seven days).
- Hospital discharge of confirmed COVID-19 cases can be determined on clinical grounds without prior approval by DHHS. Patients are not required to stay in hospital for the duration of their infectious period.
- If testing health care workers, doctors are reminded to clearly mark pathology slips with ‘HCW’ to ensure the swabs can be easily identified for priority testing.
- Doctors are reminded to ensure they include a mobile contact number on pathology slips for patients who have been tested.
- Physical (social) distancing measures should be consistently applied, if at all possible, including in clinical settings. The rule of 1 person for every 4 square metres must be maintained to ensure a safe physical distance.
- Stay home. Protect the health system. Save lives.
- There are only four reasons to leave home:
- shopping for what you need - food and essential supplies
- medical, care or compassionate needs
- exercise in compliance with the public gathering requirements
- work and study if you can’t work or learn remotely
- The rules are clear - and they don't change over Easter: if you can stay at home, you must stay at home.
No Easter holiday is worth a life.
Current directions arising from the declared state of emergency
A range of restrictions are in place an include, staying at home, restrictions on particular activities, detention, restrictions on airports and cruise ships, aged care, hospitals and isolation.
These are defined in a list of Directions from the Chief Health Officer that are in effect and can be viewed at the department's website. The site also contains a page of frequently asked questions providing further guidance on the directions.
- Doctors, nurses, midwives and mental health professionals can deliver temporary Medicare Benefits Schedule and Department of Veterans’ Affairs items via telehealth, provided those services are bulk billed.
- All Victorians are encouraged to get their Flu Vaccination, now available from Pharmacies and GPs. The vaccination cannot protect you from COVID-19 but will ensure your immunity isn’t compromised further by contracting Influenza.
- From 1 April, Victorian pharmacists can administer approved vaccinations outside of their normal location – through the mobile and outreach services of a hospital, pharmacy or pharmacy depot.
- Appropriately trained pharmacists can now administer the flu shot to children 10 years of age and older.
- Pharmacists can also administer the measles-mumps-rubella, meningococcal ACWY and whooping cough-containing vaccines to people 15 years of age and older.
A public information hotline is provided by Health Direct – 1800 675 398.
Medical practitioners needing clinical information or to notify suspected or confirmed cases can contact the Department of Health and Human Services Communicable Diseases Section on 1300 651 160 (24 hours).
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