State’s case numbers slow, death toll rises

COVID-19 cases have significantly decreased across Victoria since a second round of stage three restrictions were introduced for regional areas on August 5, and stage four in Melbourne from August 2.

In the 24 hours to Thursday there were 240 new cases, bringing the state’s total to 17,683 — 4864 of which were active.

Of those active cases, 4438 were from metropolitan Melbourne while 295 were from regional parts of the state.

There were 1811 active cases relating to aged care facilities, and 753 active cases came from healthcare workers.

On Thursday a further 13 people died, bringing the total number of lives lost due to the virus in Victoria to 376.

As of the latest figures Central Goldfields had two total cases, with one active.

There are no active cases in surrounding shires including Mount Alexander (10 total), Pyrenees (two), Hepburn (two) and Loddon (four).

The bulk of cases outside Melbourne have been recorded in the larger regional centres of Greater Bendigo, which on Thursday had a total 95 cases and 27 active, Ballarat with a total 60 and 18 active, and Greater Geelong which had 335 total and 118 active.

In his daily press conference on Thursday Premier Daniel Andrews said while the lower regional case numbers are good, Victorians should not become complacent.

“In Greater Geelong, Greater Bendigo and Ballarat and surrounds, those numbers are more than stabilising, they are in fact coming down,” he said.

“Total numbers across regional Victoria are coming down, but that shouldn’t lead to any sense of complacency, that’s exactly what we want. They were always low and we want to keep them there and drive them down even further.

“Getting tested and following the rules is a critically important part of that.”