Cases Dip As Victoria Looks Ahead To A ‘Vaccinated Economy’
Health experts urge caution
Victoria recorded its lowest number in weeks with 1462 new infections on Monday and sadly seven Covid-related deaths.
There are 24,831 active coronavirus cases, with 784 people in hospital, while 145 of those in ICU and 94 on ventilators.
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The new cases were detected from 56,905 swabs delivered on Sunday, while 27,859 vaccine doses were administered at state-run hubs, with thousands more at GP clinics and pharmacies.
As of Monday morning, 74 per cent of Victorians aged over 16 are now fully vaccinated, with targets of 80 per cent expected to be met by the end of the week with significant steps in the state's reopening roadmap to come into effect form 6pm Friday.
At this point regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne will come into line with each other, with the same rules set to apply.
Further 'fundamental changes' are set to be announced once the state reached 90 per cent vaccination targets, expected to be hit on Wednesday, November 24.
Premier Dan Andrews said the changes to the state's approach will be profoundly different, instead driven by a purely 'vaccinated economy' in a bid to 'live with Covid'.
"There will be no caps anywhere. There will be no density quotients anywhere," he said.
"Masks will only be required in high-risk indoor setting, for instance, public transport, prisons, hospitals, aged care to give you some examples."
Confident in the state reaching the milestone on time, the Premier highlighted that the 'vaccinated economy" will remain a staple during 2022, with those who haven't had the jab missing out.
"We've made the vaccinated economy not only broader, but we've also indicated – we've been very clear about the fact – that it's not changing any time soon, and it's going to be here for 2022," Mr Andrews said.
Australian Medical Association president Omar Khorshid believes Victoria is well placed to continue easing restrictions for those who are fully vaccinated but urged caution with case numbers still in the thousands.
"We do need to wait and see whether those numbers do explode as people start to move through the community more".
"We're a long way from having a hospital system that can cope with Covid, and that's why these restrictions are still necessary," Dr Khorshid implored.
Despite soaring case numbers, the move to open is in direct response to the state's focus on vaccination and herd immunisation, rather than a target of Covid zero.
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