Victoria's Latrobe Valley region enters lockdown as state records 867 COVID-19 cases

Four additional COVID-related deaths have also been reported in Victoria.

Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley speaks to the media during a press conference in Melbourne, Thursday, September 2, 2021.

Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley speaks to the media during a press conference in Melbourne, Thursday, September 2, 2021. Source: AAP

The City of Latrobe in Victoria's Gippsland region has entered a seven-day lockdown to curb a growing COVID-19 outbreak. 

The Victorian Department of Health confirmed the restrictions in Latrobe will be the same as those in metropolitan Melbourne from 11:59pm on Tuesday, excluding the nightly curfew.

"Caseloads in the City of Latrobe have rapidly increased in recent days, with 18 active cases in this Local Government Area as of 28 September," it said in a statement.

"A further four cases have been confirmed today through to this afternoon, and will be reported in tomorrow’s numbers."

Victoria recorded 867 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases and four deaths in the 24 hours to midnight on Monday, as well as an additional 149 infections from previous days.

It is the state's highest daily figure since the start of the pandemic, surpassing the previous record of 847 cases on Saturday.

Health Minister Martin Foley confirmed an additional 140 cases have been added to Monday's tally and nine to Sunday's due to a software error affecting one of the state's pathology providers.

He said the 149 positive cases "received their advice as per normal from those pathology providers".

"That software problem has been rectified ... and this, fortunately, did not have an impact on... the people concerned getting the test results," Mr Foley said.

This means there are now 9,261 active infections across Victoria, including 375 in hospital, 81 of which are in intensive care.

Mr Foley said the four deaths are a man in his 80s from Whittlesea, a woman in her 80s from Hume, a man in his 70s from Hume and a woman in her 50s from Whittlesea.

At least three were unvaccinated.

Their deaths bring the toll from the current outbreak to 29.

There were 49,450 coronavirus tests processed and 35,160 vaccine doses administered at state-run hubs on Monday.

The state government announced it is launching a new trial of an app that could be used to check on Victorians returning from interstate and overseas.

The app matches selfies with location-based technology to confirm a person is at home.

Mr Foley called on Victorians currently self-isolating to take part in the trial.

"This is a voluntary pilot, and it's one that's been conducted by a number of states as part of the national cabinet decision to trial alternatives to hotel quarantining," he said.

Almost 79 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over have now had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while more than 48 per cent have had two doses.

Melbourne's lockdown will remain in place until 70 per cent of Victorians aged over 16 are double-vaccinated, which is forecast for 26 October.

A more significant easing of restrictions will occur when the 80 per cent double-dose target is met, forecast for 5 November.

However, some modest changes will be made to restrictions on Wednesday, when the state passes 80 per cent single-dose vaccination coverage.

This includes extending the travel limit to 15 kilometres, as well as the resumption of golf, tennis and cricket and group personal training for up to five fully vaccinated adults.

With SBS News


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Published 28 September 2021 at 9:42am, updated 28 September 2021 at 6:49pm
Source: AAP - SBS