Victoria has recorded three new cases of coronavirus since yesterday.
The cases are all in hotel quarantine, two in men aged in their 20s and one in a girl aged in her teens.
There are no new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in Victoria. This is the 17th consecutive day where Victoria has recorded no new locally acquired cases of coronavirus.
The number of active cases in Victoria is 33, made up of one locally acquired case linked to the Black Rock restaurant cluster, no change since yesterday, and 32 cases in travellers in hotel quarantine, an increase of two since yesterday.
As announced yesterday, changes to the ‘traffic light’ travel permit zones in New South Wales and Queensland are now in effect.
Only one Local Government Area (LGA) - Cumberland in Greater Sydney - remains as a red zone.
If you have been in the Cumberland LGA in the past 14 days, other than for transit, you cannot enter Victoria without an exemption, exception, Specified Worker Permit or Freight Worker Permit.
The Greater Sydney LGAs of Blacktown City, Burwood, Canada Bay City, Canterbury-Bankstown, Fairfield City, Inner West, Liverpool City, Parramatta City and Strathfield Municipality will now join the rest of Greater Sydney, Wollongong and Blue Mountains as orange zones.
Anyone who is now in an orange zone and meets the permit criteria can now apply for an Orange Zone Permit. Travel from an orange zone requires people to self-isolate, get tested within 72 hours of arrival and remain in quarantine until they receive a negative result.
Greater Brisbane and regional New South Wales, excluding Wollongong and Blue Mountains, has changed from an orange zone to a green zone.
Travel from a green zone requires people to watch and get tested if they have any symptoms at all.
Travellers must also confirm they have not been in the remaining red zone of Cumberland within the past 14 days (other than for transit), have not been in close contact with a coronavirus case and do not have any symptoms.
Exemption applications are no longer required for those LGAs being downgraded to an orange zone – unless people have also been in a red zone in the last 14 days.
The latest information and advice, including a description of the red, orange and green zones, can be found on the Victorian Travel Permit System page.
This ‘traffic light’ system allows all residents and travellers wishing to enter Victoria from anywhere across Australia to apply for a permit via the Service Victoria online portal. It takes less than five minutes to complete a permit application which is processed automatically.
Since the portal went live on 11 January, 294,317 permits have been issued. In the past 24 hours, 24,945 applications have been processed – an average of 17.3 permits issued each minute.
Applications can be made through the Service Victoria portal.
In response to Victoria’s continued low levels of COVID-19 transmission, the cap on gatherings limits in homes has risen from 15 to 30 people.
This long weekend, we are asking people to stay sensible and celebrate Australia Day in a COVIDSafe way.
The movement of people is a main driver for the spread of COVID-19 and this virus can spread quickly, so we urge the people of Victoria to use common sense this Australia Day. We have invested too much in our fight against COVID-19 to let our guard down and become complacent.
Party-goers should continue to practice physical distancing, maintain good hygiene, wash their hands regularly and thoroughly or use hand sanitiser, don't share drinks, and stay home and get tested even if they have the mildest of symptoms.
With high temperatures forecast over the coming days, Heat Health Alerts have been issued for:
- The Mallee weather district today (Saturday 23 January)
- Central, Mallee, North Central, North East, Northern Country, South West and Wimmera weather districts on Sunday 24 January
- Central, East Gippsland, Mallee, North Central, North East, Northern Country and West and South Gippsland for Monday 25 January
With high temperatures and the elevated risk of bushfires, it is important to be aware of the following advice in relation to coronavirus (COVID-19).
If you are quarantining or isolating at home and begin to feel any symptoms that may indicate heat illness (nausea, dizziness, headaches, muscle cramps), seek medical advice. Tell them that you are quarantining or isolating at home.
Additionally, if you are unable to keep cool at home, or need to evacuate due to a fire consider going to the home of a friend or family member. Please contact the Department of Health and Human Services on the number you have been provided as soon as you can.
Limit the risk of infection by washing your hands or using hand sanitiser before entering, wear a fitted face mask at all times, isolate yourself alone in a comfortable room, and close the door.
Everyone must comply with all coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions and directions regardless of the high temperatures. This includes wearing a face mask where it is mandatory to do so.
Dizziness or a racing heartbeat are warning signs of heat exhaustion. If this happens, get out of the heat and seek medical advice. You may remove your mask in a medical emergency.
Masks may be ineffective when they become wet either from sweat or being immersed in water. When a mask becomes wet, it cannot act as an effective protection for yourself and others against coronavirus (COVID-19). A wet mask may also make breathing difficult.
If you’re heading out on a warm or hot day, make sure you take a couple of spare masks with you. You should always use hand sanitiser or wash your hands before and after changing your face mask.
Given the current low levels of COVID-19 community transmission in Victoria, the Victorian
Chief Health Officer has recommended that mask wearing is no longer necessary in certain settings. Masks are only mandatory:
- on public transport
- when riding in a ride share or taxi
- inside shopping centres, including the retail stores inside shopping centres, such as clothing stores
- inside indoor markets
- in large retail stores (over 2000 sqm), such as department stores, electronics stores, furniture stores, hardware stores or supermarkets
- on domestic flights to and from Victoria
- at airports
- in hospitals and care facilities
You must always carry a face mask with you when you leave home unless you have a lawful reason not to. It is strongly recommended you wear one whenever you cannot keep 1.5 metres distance from others.
Yesterday 15,711 tests were processed, bringing the overall testing total in Victoria since the pandemic began to 4,353,741.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms include fever, sore throat, cough, shortness of breath and loss or change in sense of smell or taste. If you are experiencing any symptoms, wear a fitted face mask when you get tested.
Please get tested at your nearest available testing location. People returning from New South Wales to Victoria should visit a testing site closer to their home rather than at the border, as the Albury Wodonga Health testing site is approaching capacity.
The department is publishing expected wait times at testing sites as well as updated information about locations and hours of operation at Where to get tested.
Information regarding COVID-19 is available at the Department of Health and Human Services website or by calling 1800 675 398.