Pop-up vaccination clinics coming to Melbourne suburbs; 1571 cases

Pop-up vaccination clinics will be deployed on shopping strips, inside community centres and within retail, food and gym outlets. Victorians will not be required to book an appointment at the pop-ups which were set up to support Victorians getting vaccinated with Pfizer at a convenient location. The first pop-up model will open on Wednesday at the Degani’s Mernda Junction cafe in Melbourne’s outer north. Suburbs in scope for neighbourhood pop-ups are concentrated around Melbourne’s mid and outer north, west and south east. Broadmeadows, Craigieburn, Glenroy and South Morang will be next to host the sites. The announcement comes as 60 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over are now fully vaccinated. MITCHELL SHIRE FREED FROM LOCKDOWNMitchell Shire will leave lockdown from 11.59pm Wednesday, bringing the area in line with the rest of regional Victoria.Health Minister Martin Foley said vaccination efforts had taken off in recent weeks, with cases stabilising.The limited reasons to leave home and the 15-kilometre travel radius will no longer apply in Mitchell Shire.DEADLIEST DAY OF OUTBREAKVictoria has experienced the deadliest day of its Delta outbreak.Another 13 deaths were recorded across suburban Melbourne on Wednesday.The deaths include a man in his 50s, a man in his 60s, a man in his 70s and two men in their 80s all from Whittlesea.A woman in her 90s from Darebin also died, along with a man in his 80s from Hume, a woman in her 80s from Moonee Valley, and a man in his 70s from Brimbank.So too did a woman in her 70s from Banyule, a man in his 70s from Moreland, a woman in her 60s from Stonnington, and a man in his 60s from Nillumbik.A huge number of Victorians are in hospital with Covid-19.Health Minister Martin Foley said 705 Victorians were in hospital with the virus, including 146 in intensive care and 92 on a ventilator.Victoria has recorded 1571 new Covid cases, along with 13 deaths.The state has 19,861 active cases after a whopping 79,2000 tests were received on Tuesday. More than 38,000 Victorians received a dose of the Covid vaccine at a state hub on Tuesday, with at least 86.2 per cent of the state now single-jabbed. At present, 60.4 per cent of eligible Victorians are fully vaccinated.The state is set to hit critical vaccination targets to unlock Melbourne early, but health chiefs have refused to confirm if the state’s roadmap will be fast-tracked.The map originally projected that 70 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over would be fully vaccinated about October 26, and 80 per cent about November 5.The state is on track to hit those targets up to five days ahead of schedule after officially notching up 60 per cent fully vaccinated.Chief health officer ­Professor Brett Sutton on Tuesday refused to confirm if hitting the 70 per cent threshold would trigger an immediate end to lockdown. “It is possible that we’re three or four days ahead of that original forecast,” he said.“But as I’ve said all along, it kind of depends each and every day on those (vaccination) bookings getting fulfilled, and people stepping up and getting that vaccine.”Once the 70 per cent target is hit, Melbourne’s lockdown can end, the curfew can be lifted, bigger groups can gather and eateries will open to 50 vaccinated patrons for outdoor service.Prof Sutton said no decision was “critically linked to a specific single figure”, adding the modelling had its own uncertainty. “Being absolutely fixated on 69.5 per cent or 70.5 per cent is one thing … (but) around that time, we know we can make some moderate and precautionary steps,” he said.“We don’t want any restrictions to be in place that aren’t appropriately precautionary.”Opposition Leader ­Matthew Guy said Victoria’s 70 per cent double-dose goal was “too conservative” in terms of the freedoms offered in return.He renewed calls for the government to sync vaccine requirements and freedoms with the New South Wales roadmap.“Having the two states on the same page is very important … it gives us the consistency we need to get out of this mess,” Mr Guy said.Victoria recorded 1466 new locally acquired cases on Tuesday, the lowest daily figure in almost a week.Prof Sutton said he was “cautiously optimistic” about what appeared to be a downward trend in case numbers.“I think it’s terrific to have seen a consistent drop over a few days,” he said.But he warned: “It’s not ­definitive and we can see numbers bounce around and we can see behavioural changes affect the numbers a few days later”.He said it was still too early to determine whether daily case numbers could still exceed last Saturday’s national record of 1965 infections.Vic Locally-acquired Covid-19If infections had now stabilised, Prof Sutton said he would anticipate that hospitalisations would peak in about two to three weeks.“Hopefully, going into ­November, it’s easing off, but it won’t magically disappear,” he said.Burnett Institute modelling predicted the state was set to reach a peak seven-day average of 1960 daily cases on October 25. The seven-day average is now sitting at 1732.The modelling also found more than 1660 people would be in hospital and 360 in intensive care units, but as of Tuesday, just 675 and 144 patients were in hospital and ICU ­respectively.Deakin University epidemiology chair Professor Catherine Bennett said it was a good thing predictions on hospitalisations and deaths had so far not stacked up.Of Tuesday’s new cases, 527 were detected in Melbourne’s northern suburbs, 387 in the west, 363 in the southeast and 69 in the eastern suburbs.There were 110 new cases in regional Victoria, bringing the total number of active cases outside metropolitan Melbourne to 1144.Regional towns will not be given greater freedoms if they reach their respective targets prior to the statewide average.“The plan for the roadmap is statewide. It’s really difficult to pick off individual local government areas,” Prof Sutton said.“People would make the claim for a patchwork of LGAs within metropolitan Melbourne on that basis.”National – 2021 – Covid Vaccination StatsREMEMBRANCE DAY RULES UNCLEARVictorian Veterans Minister Shaun Leane has urged health officials to clear up confusion for concerned RSLs who fear they can’t raise funds for Remembrance Day. Mr Leane said there was nothing to suggest that volunteers could not sell poppies ahead of Remembrance Day. “There’s no basis for concern,” he said. “The RSL is a big organisation and there might have been a few people at sub-branches that had a few concerns. “It’s not going to be an issue. I understand it’s a really important fundraiser for them.”He said that selling poppies would be permitted under outdoor retail, which is due to come into effect from 70 per cent double dose. Mr Leane urged people to “spend big” and buy poppies. It comes after Victorian veterans called for clearer guidelines on Remembrance Day gatherings as they plan commemorative services for next month.RSL branches and the state opposition want clarity over the government’s road map so more people can attend events to honour our fallen soldiers.Remembrance Day – marking the date guns of the Western Front fell silent – will come about a week after Victoria is due to hit its 80 per cent fully vaccinated target and restrictions ease significantly.A state government spokesman this week said: “We are working closely with the Shrine and RSL as the custodians of this important day, to ensure all who want to can commemorate in a meaningful way”.WORKERS GET THE HURRY-UP ON JABS Victorians working in public-facing jobs will need to be vaccinated as soon as the state begins to reopen later this month.Chief health officer Brett Sutton has moved to clarify vaccination rules after the Herald Sun revealed confusion over requirements in the month between restrictions easing and the government’s mandate kicking in.While patrons would have to be fully vaccinated to access retail stores and the hairdresser after 70 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over are fully vaccinated, it wasn’t clear whether workers would have to be doubled dosed.Prof Sutton on Tuesday revealed it was his expectation that everyone – including thousands of hospitality workers – would be double jabbed when seated dining returns.“My expectation would be that those are fully vaccinated settings for staff and patrons,” he said.“That has been laid out in the roadmap and that would be my expectation.”But Professor Sutton said specific public health directions, which addressed the requirement to be vaccinated in order to work on-site from late October, were not yet written.The new directions will address specific industries on the roadmap, such as hospitality and hairdressing, that can reopen once the state reaches its 70 per cent double dose target.The Herald Sun understands those directions would only be published days before hitting the key 70 per cent double-dose vaccine target.Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive Paul Guerra said many employers had reached out looking for guidance and advice.“The public health orders provide the business community some certainty but it is a complex issue that is still being digested,” he said.It comes after the Department of Health was unable to provide clear advice when repeatedly asked by the Herald Sun to clarify the rules.“Public health teams are currently working on how to best ensure staff and patrons are as protected as possible as we move to different phases in the roadmap, and will have more to say soon,” a spokesman said on Monday.NED-4292-Percentage-of-eligible-population-fully-vaccinated-by-stateELECTIVE PATIENTS LOSING THE WARDElective surgeries will be scaled back further in coming weeks as Victoria’s battling healthcare system prepares to take in more Covid patients.Health Minister Martin Foley said all urgent category 1 and 2a surgeries would proceed as planned but could shift to the private sector depending on locations and individual hospital circumstances.Mr Foley refused to rule out even stricter measures.“Essentially all non-urgent (surgeries) … will be rescheduled on a case-by-case basis depending on particular circumstances in particular locations,” he said, adding there wouldn’t be a statewide approach.“It will apply differently in the regions, and it will apply differently depending where the levels of demand are on those public healthcare systems. It won’t be uniform like it was in 2020 when we just switch the whole lot off.”Mr Foley said all Victorians with a planned surgery in coming weeks could expect a call to discuss their case.“Work on the basis that until such time as you are contacted, that your scheduled care will continue, but we can’t rule out that non-urgent, non-category 1 and category 2a conditions won’t be rescheduled,” he said.NED-4476-Covid-19-Vaccine-Rates-MelbourneNED-4492-Victoria-Covid-19-Active-Case-map

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