Media release
18 June 2021

Victoria was notified of two new cases of COVID-19 yesterday.

One case is a primary close contact of a positive case from the Southbank outbreak.

The other case is a woman aged in her 20s who is a returned international traveller in hotel quarantine.

There were seven COVID-19 cases in hospital in Victoria yesterday. One case is in intensive care.

There are 54 active cases in Victoria – 37 are locally acquired and 17 are overseas acquired cases.

The total number of confirmed cases in Victoria since the beginning of the pandemic is 20,680.

Update: Outbreaks

The new locally acquired case is a household contact of a known positive case linked to the Southbank outbreak. She has been in quarantine since 14 June.

There are no new exposure sites or public health risks identified from this case.

The total number of positive COVID-19 cases linked to the Southbank outbreaks stands at nine. All 22 residents who live in close proximity to the nine positive cases have been tested at least once and returned negative results. They will be asked to test every two days while they undertake 14 days of quarantine.

There are 168 residents identified in the wider Kings Park, Southbank, complex and 137 have returned negative tests. Testing efforts continue with these individuals and they will be asked to test again midway through their quarantine period as part of ongoing surveillance.

Victorian public health officials and contact tracers continue to work hard to get on top of the outbreaks across Melbourne.

As of yesterday, there remain 1369 active primary close contacts connected to the outbreaks. Over the past week we have reduced the number of primary close contacts from 4500.

Testing of primary close contacts of the Epping Private Hospital case continues with the majority of contacts returning negative results.

At Epping Private Hospital, 11 staff members at the hospital have been identified as Tier 1 primary close contacts and are quarantining for 14 days with 10 returning negative results. All other staff have been tested and can return to work only after receiving a negative test result.

At the Northern Hospital, 67 people have been identified as primary close contacts and 55 have retuned negative test results.

At the Northern Health Immunisation Clinic, all staff have returned negative results and around half of the 55 patients have so far tested negative.

The immunisation clinic will not be listed as a public exposure site as all primary close contacts have been contacted. If you attended this clinic on 14 June but have not been contacted by public health officials you are not required to isolate or get tested. 

Genomic testing results on the nurse from Epping Private have shown the Kappa variant of COVID-19 and a close link to the Arcare aged care cases which the nurse was treating. 

More than 90 per cent of all primary close contacts linked to the West Melbourne, City of Whittlesea and Port Melbourne outbreaks have been cleared.

Day 13 testing is underway this weekend with primary close contacts linked to the Arcare Maidstone aged care facility outbreak. Subject to these cases returning negative test results, it is hoped the facility can re-open early next week.

The full list of Victorian exposure sites can be seen at  Case alerts public exposure sites.

The Department also manages a number of exposure sites that it doesn’t publish online, particularly if these sites represent lower-risk exposures, if they have comprehensive record-keeping and contact tracing measures in place, or if they identify small, private locations.

Exposure sites are regularly reviewed based on intelligence and evidence, following case interviews.

Update: New South Wales travel permit zone

The Chief Health Officer yesterday assessed the public health risks of community transmission within NSW and designated the NSW Local Government Areas of City of Sydney, Waverley and Woollahra as orange zones under Victoria’s travel permit system from 11 June.

Permit checks are now in place at our airports. A total of 4761 text messages were sent last night to individuals who arrived in Victoria from NSW orange zones between 11 and 16 June.

We are asking them to test and isolate until they receive a negative result and also advising them to review the NSW public exposure site listings.

Anyone arriving into Victoria from City of Sydney, Waverley and Woollahra LGAs must obtain an orange zone permit at Service Victoria, isolate and get tested upon arrival and stay isolated until they receive a negative result.

Anyone who has arrived into Victoria from City of Sydney, Waverley and Woollahra LGAs from 11 June must isolate, get tested, and stay isolated until they receive a negative result. To see where to get tested, visit Where to get tested.

Further updates may be provided based on public heath advice. The Chief Health Officer strongly advises those planning to travel from Victoria to the City of Sydney, Waverley and Woollahra LGAs to reconsider their plans.

All arrivals into Victoria must apply for a travel permit at www.service.vic.gov.au, even if you are in a green zone. For more information about Victoria’s travel permit system, visit Victorian Travel Permit System.

NSW Health has published a list of exposure sites online at Latest COVID-19 case locations and alerts in NSW. If you are in Victoria and have been to these locations, follow the listed advice and contact us at 1300 651 160.

Update: Vaccinations

Yesterday 16,710 vaccine doses were administered by Victoria’s state-commissioned services.

This brings the total number of vaccine doses administered at state-commissioned services to 868,512.

There is strong demand for eligible Victorians to be vaccinated and protected against COVID-19. More than 1.83 million doses have been administered across state, general practice and Commonwealth programs in Victoria, and we thank everyone who has already come forward to be vaccinated.

Victoria’s online booking system is now live at Book your vaccine appointment.

Victoria is now prioritising second dozes of Pfizer vaccine to ensure everyone who received their first dose in the past few weeks completes their two-dose schedule of vaccinations within the recommended timeframe.

Individuals awaiting their second dose are encouraged to book online today or call the coronavirus hotline so they can receive their second dose within the recommended three to six-week window.

The full list of state-commissioned vaccination centres, their opening times, and walk-in guidance, is available at Vaccination centres.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) released a statement yesterday advising that the Pfizer vaccine is preferred over the AstraZeneca vaccine for people aged under 60 years.

In line with ATAGI’s recommendations, any person aged 60 years and over will continue to be offered the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine as the preferred vaccine at state vaccination centres.

If you have had a first dose of AstraZeneca with no adverse effects, the clear advice is for you to have a second dose of AZ at the recommended time of 12 weeks. This is safe and recommended by ATAGI.

If you are aged 50-59 years and currently booked to receive your first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine between Thursday 17 June 2021 and Sunday 20 June 2021, you will be offered the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

People booked to receive their first dose of AstraZeneca from Monday 21 June in the 50-59 age group may be contacted by the Victorian Coronavirus Hotline (1800 675 398) or their health service to offer them a booking for Pfizer.

Update: Testing

Victoria’s strong testing numbers continued yesterday with 35,252 tests processed.

This number is more than double the daily number of people who came forward for testing earlier this week.

Only through extensive testing can we be certain we are rapidly identifying all COVID-19 cases in Victoria.

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.

Update: QR Codes

QR code data is a key source of intelligence for our contact tracers. The more Victorians that check in, the faster the team can address outbreaks and help us build confidence so we can stay COVIDSafe. 3.8 million QR code check-ins are now happening every day on average. 

Businesses, including your local supermarket and take-away shop, are now required to use the Government’s QR code through the Service Victoria app and to ensure their customers check-in upon arrival, even if they visit the venue for only a few minutes.

More than 178,000 Victorian businesses are currently using the free QR code service through the Service Victoria app, with more than 400,000 unique posters on display around shops and communities.

For customers who are unable to check-in themselves, the Victorian Government has developed a Service Victoria Kiosk Check-in service that allows businesses to check-in their customers.

More than 4,800 locations across Victoria have the Kiosk Check-in service up and running with some venues setting up multiple devices. Over 94,000 check-ins have been made using the service in the past week. Workplaces have a further two weeks to comply with the QR Code requirement with an amnesty period running until 1 July.

Update: Eased restrictions

From 11.59pm last night, Victoria's restrictions have been further eased on the advice of the Chief Health Officer.

All Melbourne residents aged 12 years and over attending Victoria’s Alpine Resorts need to show proof of a negative test before entering a resort area.

Visitors to our ski fields need to provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result that was conducted within 72 hours of leaving Melbourne. This evidence may be an email or a text. Without this, you will not be able to enter the resort area. We understand this might be challenging for some people – but it will help us keep the Alpine Resorts safe and operating.

More information can be found at the Statement from the Acting Premier.

General advice

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 symptoms, wear a fitted face mask when you get tested.

For more information call the 24-hour Coronavirus Hotline at 1800 675 398 or visit coronavirus.vic.gov.au.

Latest statewide numbers (data reported to 11:59pm yesterday):

Cases acquired locally Cases acquired interstate Cases acquired overseas Active cases Lives lost Tests processed yesterday Total tests since pandemic began 
1 0 1 54 0 35,252 6,998,972

 

Number of permits issued 

(Jan 11 - 7am today)

Number of permit applications processed in the past 24 hours Average # of permits issued per minute in the past 24 hours 

2,553,527

8,475 5.89