Victoria’s Prime Minister Daniel Andrews says it is too early to say whether there will be an extension of the state’s Covid-19 lockdown for five days.
The prime minister said on Sunday that the state was not seeing any new broadcast networks opening up and that the outbreak was unfolding as the government “expected.”
“This lockdown will not last longer than necessary,” Andrews said.
Victoria recorded 16 new locally acquired cases in the 24 hours to midnight Saturday, but authorities reported that there had been an additional case in the Victoria region, added an hour before Sunday’s press conference.
The additional case was a man in Mildura who had presented to the hospital with symptoms of Covid-19 after attending the Carlton-Geelong AFL game at the Melbourne Cricket Ground last Saturday.
When asked if regional areas could get out of the blockade earlier than other places, the prime minister said he had no advice to shorten the blockade for anyone.
“A case across Mildura, a long way from Melbourne, points out that when it comes to the spread of this virus, it is an easy thing and a small task for this virus to get from one end of Victoria to the other, Andrews said.
53,283 test results were obtained during the last 24 hour reporting period and 16,751 vaccinations were administered in Victoria.
Victoria has also recorded two new foreign-acquired infections, currently in hotel quarantine, bringing the total number of active cases to 71.
All locally acquired cases are linked to the current outbreaks and Victoria’s health department said it is collaborating with six schools after they were linked to positive cases.
A stay-at-home order will expire at midnight Tuesday, but could be extended based on data that includes case numbers and exposure sites, said health director Brett Sutton.
“Every Victorian must prepare for what may come up in the next 24/48 hours,” he said Saturday.
“All I can say is that the response could not have been better. The judgments that have been made around a hard and fast block have been the correct ones. And that gets us on the right track.
“We have the setup in place until midnight Tuesday and we will do another assessment every day for the next three days.”
On Saturday, authorities estimated there were 10,000 “primary close contacts” in Victoria and by Sunday morning they had identified 217 potential sites of Covid exposure across the state.
Some of the exposure sites and close contacts have spread to the Victoria region.
Attractions include pubs, clubs, restaurants, sports facilities, shopping malls, schools and gyms in Greater Melbourne, suburbs, and multiple locations on Phillip Island, a two-hour drive south of Melbourne.
The growing list of sites and restrictions can be found at www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au
Victoria’s Health Minister Martin Foley said the state hopes to boost the Commonwealth’s vaccination program.
“I don’t think it is a state secret that we are far behind where we should be in the vaccination program,” he told reporters on Saturday.
Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania have all imposed border restrictions with Victoria.