WATCH

Victorian COVID-19 update: 79 new cases recorded

Health authorities would not be drawn on whether Victoria will be released from lockdown on September 2 as planned as the state recorded 79 new cases on Friday.

Victoria now has 660 active cases.

Of today's 79 new cases, 16 are mystery cases under investigation.

There are 37 Victorians in hospital, with 14 in intensive care and nine on a ventilator.

It comes as children aged 12 and over will be added to the vaccine rollout, ATAGI advised on Friday.

Almost a quarter of active cases are in children under 10, pouring cold water on a return to school soon.

Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley said vaccine appointments for children aged between 12 and 15 would be primarily delivered through GP and Primary Health Care clinics, which are coordinated by the federal government.

Minister Foley confirmed just 19 of the 79 new COVID-19 cases were self-isolating throughout their entire infectious period.

"With interviews still going on with quite a range of others, we would expect that number to grow over the course of the day."

He said there had been "huge demand" for vaccines and encouraged the community to be patient as thousands of appointments continue to be added to the website.

There were 33,611 Victorians vaccinated through state-run clinics yesterday.

"We have seen an incredible demand from young people aged 18 to 39 come forward to be vaccinate in recent days," he said.

Only around 9000 appointments remain.

"This shows hesitancy is not a problem," Minister Foley said.

"Victoria will take all the vaccines it can get its hands on to meet the level of demand we're seeing."

Aged care and disability support workers are urged to book their vaccine appointments before September 17.

Of today's 79 new cases, 16 are mystery cases.

  • 10 are linked to Shepparton
  • One to Royal Melbourne Hospital
  • Six to the Carlton/Brunswick cluster
  • Nine in Broadmeadows
  • Two in Caroline Springs
  • 46 in the western suburbs of Melbourne, including 12 in Wyndham and 11 in Newport
  • One in Geelong
  • Two in Monash

About one in 10 of the state's cases are in the regional Victorian town of Shepparton, which now has 79 cases.

An Echuca aged care worker who has tested positive was the partner of someone in the Shepparton outbreak.

She last worked on August 20 and state testing commander Jeroen Weimar believes the exposure period was "relatively short".

Around 40 staff from the Echuca facility are now isolating.

About 16,000 residents in the Shepparton region, which has a population of 65,000, are believed to be self-isolating, forcing the closure of food distributors, supermarkets and pharmacies due to staff shortages.

Meanwhile, a new permit has been approved for those who complete hotel quarantine interstate, and mandates a day 17 test when they return to Victoria.

It comes as young people across the region took up the opportunity to be vaccinated after the Pfizer vaccine became available to to people aged 16 to 39 in Victoria on Wednesday.

This story 79 new cases as regional Victorian outbreak continues to grow first appeared on The Standard.