Media release
1 January 2021

Victoria has recorded eight new cases of coronavirus since yesterday including five cases in the community and three cases in hotel quarantine.

Five of these cases were reported yesterday.

This brings the number of active cases in Victoria to 18 including nine locally acquired cases and nine in hotel quarantine.

All five of the cases in the community have been identified as primary close contacts to the existing cases in the Mentone and Mitcham clusters.  This means that all active cases in the community have been linked to existing cases and the origin of these cases continues to be investigated.

Four of these cases are located in metropolitan Melbourne and one in regional Victoria in Leongatha.

The eight new cases include four males and four females.  One person aged under 18, one person in their 30s, one person in their 40s, one person in their 50s, one person in their 60s and three people in their 70s. 

NSW has today advised DHHS  of two Victorians who undertook testing in NSW and returned a positive result. Contact tracing interviews are underway, they are being supported to isolate and we will provide more information later today. These cases aren’t counted in Victoria.

A total of 13,108 tests were received yesterday, bringing the total number of tests completed since 1 January 2020 to 3,889,001.  More than 25,000 tests have been conducted on the workforce in the Covid Quarantine accommodation program and all these results have been negative.

Due to the requirement for Victorians returning from NSW to get tested and the request for people who have been a close or secondary contact or who have been to exposure sites to get tested, there is a very high demand on testing facilities across Victoria.

Additional Covid-19 testing sites have been opened in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria and testing site hours have been extended where possible in some locations.  We will continue to add to the testing capacity as quickly as we can.

We have set up two new sites today at:

  • East Ringwood Reserve, 49A Mount Dandenong Road, East Ringwood – 9am to 5pm
  • Hallam Secondary College drive through – 2pm onwards

Most testing sites are experiencing long delays and some will close temporarily to enable testing staff to get through the existing demand.  There are some sites where the number of people in the queue has already reached the capacity of the site, and therefore, people will be referred to another testing site.

Updated information on locations and hours of operation for testing sites can be located on the Where to get tested page.

Victoria’s border with New South Wales will close this evening at 11:59pm.  Anyone who tries to enter Victoria after 11:59pm tonight, who does not have an exemption to enter, will be turned away and will need to find alternative accommodation in New South Wales.

Any Victorians entering Victoria before 11:59pm tonight must get tested and self-isolate for 14 days.  DHHS is able to provide emergency support to people isolating who need it, including help to access medial/pharmaceutical services and food relief. Financial support may also be available to those eligible.  Information on supports available can be found at Isolation and quarantine – extra help and support page.

Victorians are strongly advised not to travel to anywhere in New South Wales as you will not be able to re-enter Victoria without an exemption. 

The border restrictions are reviewed every day based on public health advice and we're working closely with NSW Health to monitor the situation closely. 

People living in identified and exempt Local Government Areas in Victoria and NSW can travel between exempt LGAs and will need to produce ID such as a drivers licence to show proof of residence. A transit permit system to allow to transit through NSW from Queensland and the ACT is being finalised.

DHHS is working closely with local public health units across Victoria to increase contact tracing capacity and meet the current surge in demand.  Contact tracing teams from Northern Eastern, South Eastern, Barwon and Gippsland Region Public Health Units are assisting in identifying close primary and secondary contacts.  More than 170 primary and secondary contacts have been identified to date and we are working with them to get tested and isolate.

Further information about the Victorian wastewater testing program can be found on the Wastewater monitoring page.

Information regarding COVID-19 is available at the Department of Health and Human Services website or by calling 1800 675 398.