Victoria imposes masks necessities for indoor public areas and main occasions

“Face masks are required indoors and outdoors when you move around, although masks can be removed while sitting outdoors,” said Acting Victoria Prime Minister James Merlino.

Contrary to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s insistence that mask mandates are not necessary, Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton said a mask mandate was “perfectly appropriate.”

“[Masks] are very low individual costs for us, “he said.” They have an enormous impact on the transmission, and that applies to Omicron as well as to any deviation.

“In this area there is no personal responsibility, but that there is collective responsibility and a mandate influences that.”

The daily number of cases on Thursday is Victoria’s highest since October 22, when the state recorded 2,160 cases. It increases the active infections to 14,801.

There are a total of 398 patients in the hospital, 72 of them actively infected with the virus and in intensive care, 39 of them on ventilators.

“Masks will help keep companies open and massively reduce the risk of transmission,” said Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley.

“The modeling … tells us that people who wear masks significantly reduce the pressure on our hospitals and keep people safe.”

At Thursday’s press conference, incumbent Prime Minister James Merlino also announced that the state’s booster program would be expanded, including $ 31 million in support of the Commonwealth’s booster program.

The state will also open another 28 pop-up vaccination centers.

“This new investment will enable massive expansion to support a major expansion of our state vaccination centers,” he said.

“The third dose is crucial in our fight against this new variant and we have this opportunity.

“We see what happens in the colder months in the northern hemisphere … [the virus] and we have to take this opportunity. “

The state government also recommends some “common sense measures,” including working from home when possible and eating out to provide seated service to discourage guests from moving.

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The average of the seven-day hospital stays is constant at 391.

Health officials processed 85,112 results on Wednesday while 16,758 people were vaccinated at state centers.

Victoria’s testing system continues to be weighed down under the weight of vacationers seeking a swab for interstate travel. At least 20 locations across Melbourne were temporarily closed after the capacity limit was reached from 9 a.m.

Mr Weimar said more than a quarter of all tests in the past few days were from people who needed a negative result to travel to Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory.

He made the long queues and waiting times due to the “bureaucratic” requirement and hopes that other jurisdictions will move to a “more sensible regulation”.

The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee will report to states and territories on whether PCR testing is required for interstate travel or whether rapid antigen testing can be substituted.

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