COVID numbers give hope

Sunbury in lockdown. (Pictures: Damjan Janevski) 243447_01

By Laura Michell

Sunbury and the Macedon Ranges remained free of COVID-19 cases on Monday, as hopes grew that Victoria’s lockdown would be lifted at midnight Tuesday.

Victoria recorded 10 locally acquired cases on Tuesday. The health department said all 10 cases were linked to current outbreaks and, for the third day in a row, all were in quarantine throughout their infectious period.

The health department has identified one exposure site in Sunbury.

Sunbury Square Medical Centre was named as a tier two exposure site last Wednesday before being upgraded to a tier one site last Thursday.

A positive case attended the medical centre, located within the Priceline at Sunbury Square, between 6pm and 8.30pm on Monday, July 19.

Anyone who visited the medical centre during these times must get tested immediately and quarantine for 14 days.

The medical centre was closed for deep cleaning late last week.

No new cases linked to the City of Hume outbreak have been recorded since Friday, according to the health department. There were 17 cases linked to the City of Hume as of Monday.

On Sunday, Premier Daniel Andrews said it was too early to tell whether lockdown would end tonight but said the state was “well placed”.

“On the data we have now, on the trend we have now, the strategy is working,” he said.

Mr Andrews said he expected that restrictions would be eased in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria at the same time.

He said authorities were waiting on test results from two outbreaks – the LaCrosse apartment building in Docklands and Prahan Market, as well as the outcome of day 13 tests from people in quarantine.

“… We’ve got to wait for the results to the tests, keep following the rules, keep doing the right thing and hopefully we can make positive announcements for midnight Tuesday.”

Authorities are also hoping that an anti-lockdown protest held in Melbourne’s CBD on Saturday doesn’t lead to surge in cases.

Mr Andrews said he couldn’t rule out extending the lockdown if there were cases because of the rally.

“It puts all the work everyone’s done at risk,” he said.

While COVID-19 commander Jeroen Weimar said it was unlikely that transmission had occurred at the protest, given the number of cases in the state, he labelled the protest as “a few people who had self-indulgent tantrum”.

“I wish it hadn’t happened,” he said.