State records surge of 1438 new COVID-19 cases, five deaths, as double-dosed Victorians allowed to return home

State records surge of 1438 new COVID-19 cases, five deaths, as double-dosed Victorians allowed to return home

September 29, 2021

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Victoria has recorded 1438 new local coronavirus cases and five deaths, as double-vaccinated residents who have been in an “extreme risk” zone can return home, and more primary schools and childcare centres are identified as exposure sites.

Thursday’s case numbers are a massive increase on the previous record, reached on Wednesday, of 950 cases and brings the number of active cases in the state to 11,018.

Victorians who are double-vaccinated are now allowed to return home under “extreme risk zone” permits. Credit:Jason Robins

The cases were recorded from more than 65,497 COVID-19 tests. More than 34,323 Victorians rolled up their sleeves on Wednesday to receive a dose of a coronavirus vaccine.

The record numbers came as wastewater fragments were detected in regional parts of Victoria, including Cobram, Ballarat, Bendigo and Seymour. Health authorities said the fragments could be due to undiagnosed cases or a recovering case who is shedding the virus.

Rules came into effect at 11.59pm on Wednesday that allow Victorians who have been in an extreme risk zone over the past 14 days to get a permit to return home if they have received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

They must also test negative for the virus within 72 hours before entering the state.

The double-vaccination rule does not apply to people aged under 18 and those who have a medical exemption.

Once Victorians are back in the state under an extreme risk permit, they have to go into quarantine for 14 days.

They then have to get tested again for the virus within 72 hours of their arrival, and on day 13 of their quarantine.

Under previous rules, Victorians in extreme risk zones were not allowed to obtain an extreme risk zone permit. They could only come into the state if they had an exemption or another valid permit like a specified workers’ permit.

People who are not residents of Victoria are not eligible for extreme risk zone permits, as is also the case for people who have tested positive for COVID-19, or are close contacts of a positive case.

Victorian health authorities identified a number of new close contact or tier-1 COVID-19 exposure sites late on Wednesday evening, including several childcare centres and multiple primary schools.

Two childcare centres in Melbourne’s north west – Delahey Children’s Centre at Delahey, and Kensington Community Children’s Co-operative – were among them.

Delahey’s was declared a tier-1 exposure site on Thursday, September 23 between 1pm and 6pm, while the co-operative was listed as tier 1 on the same date between 9am and 3.30pm.

In the west, Aspire Childcare Atherstone Estate at Strathtulloh was listed as tier 1 on Monday, September 27 between 8.30am and 10.30am, while Truganina Early Learning Centre was a close contact site on Thursday, September 23 between 7am and 4.30pm.

In the south east, Narre Kids Early Learning and Kinder at Narre Warren was listed as tier 1 on Monday, September 27 and on Tuesday, September 28 between 9am and 4.30pm, while St Margaret’s Primary School at Maribyrnong was declared a tier-1 exposure site on Thursday, September 23 between 8am and 4pm.

A residential public housing tower at Flemington, 126 Racecourse Road, was also declared a tier-2 or casual contact exposure site.

The tower has repeatedly been listed as an exposure site through this outbreak.

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