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Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley announced a density limit of one person per two square metres will return to indoor entertainment and hospitality venues in Victoria.
Indoor seated cinemas and theatres, where people are seated and masked, will be exempt from the limit.
Additionally, from this morning, anybody who receives a positive rapid antigen test will be considered a “probable” case of COVID-19.
“Essentially they will have precisely the same obligations and the same rights as someone, whether it be for clinical support, financial support, from both the state or the Commonwealth, a whole range of other opportunities to be part of that primary healthcare response to keep them safe as they work through their infectivity,” Mr Foley said.
“Essentially this new category based on the rapid antigen test will be the same in the system as if you were diagnosed through a PCR test.”
The renewed restrictions came as Mr Foley revealed that about a third of people getting a PCR test were coming up positive for COVID-19.
“What is clear is that we are in a new phase of this pandemic, and a new phase of how we need to respond.”
Mr Foley said rapid antigen tests had to be central to the new way of responding to ease pressure on the PCR testing system.
He said at least 700,000 of the 44 million rapid antigen tests ordered by the Victorian government would be arriving in the next day or so.
Victoria recorded 21,997 new COVID-19 cases and six deaths yesterday, with 631 people in hospital and 51 in intensive care.