By Jessica Micallef
Ten cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Hume, while the Macedon Ranges has three reported cases of the virus, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.
Elsewhere in the western suburbs, 12 cases have been reported in Brimbank, 11 in Melton, 16 in Wyndham, seven in Hobsons Bay and five cases in Maribyrnong, as of 8.24am.
A total of 574 cases has been recorded across Victoria.
Three people have died from the virus in Victoria, taking Australia’s death toll to 13.
Meanwhile, kindergartens, community halls, sport pavilions and the iconic Hanging Rock have been added to the list of closed facilities and services across the Macedon Ranges as the council continues its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The council implemented the additional closures on March 24 after many public facilities and services in the Macedon Ranges had already closed and events had been cancelled or postponed.
The council’s chief executive Margot Stork said kindergarten parents have been informed of the closures, which ended in line with the early completion of term one.
“We’ve kept kindergartens open to date in line with the advice we’ve received from the Department of Education and Training,” she said.
“However, that advice has now changed and the number of children attending is decreasing daily, with many families already opting not to send children to kindergarten.”
Parents will be informed during the school holidays of a possible reopening date of kindergartens across the region.
“We thank staff and families for their co-operation and we will update you as soon as we can,” Ms Stork said.
The popular tourist attraction Hanging Rock has also closed, including the site’s cafe and discovery centre. Carparking areas at the site will be locked and inaccessible to the public.
All of the facilities, services and sites will remain closed until April 14, after which the decision will be reviewed.
Ms Stork said everyone needed to comply with the restrictions put in place.
“Social distancing is essential to save lives,” she said.
“Please remember to stay 1.5 metres away from everyone else. Wash your hands with soap and water and cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow.
“This is a highly changeable situation and [the] council will continue to update the community regularly as it continues to unfold.”
Maternal and child health and immunisation services will remain open at the direction of the Department of Health and Human Services. Immunisation sessions will continue at the designated dates, times and locations.
New measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of nurses and clients.
Further closures were also put in place across Hume last week. Sunbury’s Eric Boardman Stadium, the Hume Global Learning Centre, Sunbury Men’s Shed and all leisure centres, libraries, neighbourhood houses and galleries closed their doors from Monday, March 23 until further notice.
Immunisation sessions in Hume are running as normal and maternal and child health services are closed until further notice. Nurses will conduct phone consultations with families.