Victorian Premiere Daniel Andrews says it’s too early to say whether there will be an extension of the state’s five-day Covid-19 lockdown.
The prime minister said on Sunday that the state saw no new transmission chains open and that the outbreak was unfolding as the government “hoped”.
“This lockdown will not last longer than it needs to be,” Andrews said.
Victoria registered 16 new locally acquired cases in the 24 hours to midnight on Saturday, but authorities advised an additional case in regional Victoria had been added in the hour before Sunday’s press conference.
The additional case was a man in Mildura who presented himself in hospital with Covid-19 symptoms after watching the Carlton-Geelong AFL match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground last Saturday.
When asked whether regional areas might come out of lockdown earlier than other places, the prime minister said he had no advice to shorten the lockdown for anyone.
“A case across the road in Mildura, far from Melbourne, makes it clear that when it comes to the spread of this virus, it is an easy matter and a small task for this virus to get from one side of the Victoria to the other,” Andrews said.
There were 53,283 test results returned during the last 24-hour reporting period and 16,751 vaccines administered in Victoria.
Victoria also recorded two new infections contracted abroad, currently in hotel quarantine, bringing the total number of active cases to 71.
The locally acquired cases are all linked to current outbreaks and Victoria’s health department said it is in contact with six schools after being linked to positive cases.
A stay at home order expires Tuesday at midnight, but can be expanded based on data, including case numbers and exposure locations, chief health officer Brett Sutton said.
“Every Victorian needs to prepare for what can happen in the next 24/48 hours,” he said on Saturday.
“I can only say that the response could not have been better. The statements made about a hard and fast lockdown have been correct. And that put us on the right track.
“We’ve set the settings until midnight Tuesday and we’ll be making a new review 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 Covid exposure sites in the state.
Some of the exposure sites and close contacts have spread to regional Victoria.
Areas of concern include pubs, clubs, restaurants, sports venues, shopping malls, schools and gyms in metropolitan Melbourne, suburbs and multiple locations on Phillip Island, two hours south of Melbourne.
The growing list of sites and restrictions can be found at www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au
Victorian Health Secretary Martin Foley said the state is looking forward to the Commonwealth’s vaccination program.
“I don’t think it’s a state secret that we are far behind with the vaccination program,” he told reporters on Saturday.
Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania have imposed border restrictions on Victoria.