31 May 2020
Date issued: 31 May 2020
Issued by: Adjunct Clinical Professor Brett Sutton, Chief Health Officer
Issued to: Clinicians and the Victorian public
This Chief Health Officer update is intended to provide clinicians and the Victorian public with information about the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Victoria as well as relevant public health response activities in Victoria. This update will be sent regularly.
Chief Health Officer Alerts will continue to be issued when there are changes to the public health advice related to COVID-19.
Developments in the outbreak
- As of 31 May 2020, the total number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Victoria is 1,649 which is a net increase of four since yesterday.
- Six new cases have been reported. Two are linked to known outbreaks, three were detected in hotel quarantine and one was detected from routine testing. Two cases were reclassified due to duplication.
- The total number of cases linked to the Cedar Meats outbreak remains at 111 (unchanged).
- 168 cases have been acquired in Victoria where the source of infection is unknown (no change since yesterday’s report).
- Six people are in hospital, including two people in intensive care.19 people have died. 1,557 people have recovered.
- Of the total 1,649 cases, there have been 1,367 in metropolitan Melbourne and 234 in regional Victoria. A number of cases remain under investigation.
- There have been 184 confirmed cases in healthcare workers, an increase of one since yesterday’s report.
- More than 509,000 test results have been received by the department since 1 January 2020.
- Up-to-date epidemiological data is available on our website.
- Victoria’s State of Emergency has been extended until 11.59pm on 21 June 2020.
- The Victorian Government has announced the gradual easing of restrictions throughout the state from 1 June and 22 June, including social events, sport, recreation, cafes, restaurants, travel and entertainment. Visit https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/victorias-restriction-levels-covid-19 for more information.
Current advice to clinicians
- Current processing time for COVID-19 tests is one to three days.
- People who have been tested at a metropolitan retail testing site can call the dedicated Onsite Doctor Results Hotline on (03) 8669 0255 if they have been waiting more than five days for results. This hotline will operate from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, until 5 June 2020.
- Practitioners are encouraged to test any patients who meet the clinical criteria below:
Fever OR chills in the absence of an alternative diagnosis that explains the clinical presentation*
Acute respiratory infection (e.g. cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose or anosmia)
Note: In addition, testing is recommended for people with new onset of other clinical symptoms consistent with COVID-19** AND who are close contacts of a confirmed case of COVID-19; who have returned from overseas in the past 14 days; or who are healthcare or aged care workers.
*Clinical discretion applies including consideration of the potential for co-infection (e.g. concurrent infection with SARS-CoV-2 and influenza)
**headache, myalgia, stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea.
- If referring your patients for COVID-19 testing, a list of testing locations can be found on the getting tested for coronavirus page.
- Applications are open for the Victorian COVID-19 Research Fund, which has been established to support research that directly contributes to the health impact findings of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- An online form is now available for travellers seeking to request a change in mandatory quarantine arrangements due to exceptional circumstances.
Key messages for the community
- Victoria’s State of Emergency has been extended to 21 June 2020, but some restrictions have been eased.
- As restrictions ease, it remains important that if you can work from home, you should do so.
- As we begin to settle into a new normal, our message is “stay safe”. That means continuing to maintain physical distance from others, take appropriate hygiene precautions, avoid crowds, stay home and get tested if you’re unwell.
Read the full update: Coronavirus COVID-19 daily update