Two north Melbourne schools will be closed for 14 days and all families and staff tested for coronavirus as Victoria sees a jump in new coronavirus cases.
Three of the new cases reside in Darebin, while one case was found in each of the suburbs of Banule, greater Dandenong, Maribyrnong and Wyndham.
Among the new cases is a student at East Preston Islamic College (EPIC) – the third case to be directly linked to the school so far – and another attends Croxton Specialist School in Northcote.
The Croxton School student is a member of a family of four who have all now tested positive for coronavirus, including a sibling who attends EPIC, but contact tracers have so far been unable to link that family to the other EPIC cases.
All students, parents and staff members from both schools are being urged to take a COVID-19 test immediately, regardless of symptoms, and remain isolated until receiving the results.
Health authorities are standing up a drive-through testing centre at East Preston Islamic College today, with additional pop-up testing sites set to be announced in Hume, Banyule and Darebin in the coming days.
Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services is now also testing “secondary” close contacts at Sirius College in Broadmeadows and Ilim College in Dallas.
These students have been in close contact with close contacts of confirmed cases, who will now be tested again over the weekend.
Victoria’s Commander of Testing and Community Engagement, Jeroen Weimar, said the department was working closely with community and faith leaders to make sure the message about testing and isolating was getting through.
“I am so grateful to our community leaders for working with us to keep people safe,” Mr Weimar said.
“I have held several sessions over the last two days to listen and act on the advice from leading community members. We are all Victorians working together to keep this virus away from our families.”
The community can access testing sites at the following locations:
- Broadmeadows Central Shopping Centre at north carpark 1099 – 1169 Pascoe Vale Rd, Broadmeadows from 9am – 5pm
- Coolaroo Respiratory Centre at 512 Barry St, Coolaroo from 9am – 5pm
- Melbourne Airport, Terminal 4 Level 2 (Mercer Dv exit off Tullamarine Fwy) from 9am – 5pm
- Craigieburn Health Service, 274 – 304 Craigieburn road from 9am – 5pm
- Highlands Hotel at 301 Grand Boulevard, Craigieburn from 9.30am 4.30pm
- Austin Hospital at 145 Studley Rd, Heidelberg from 8am – 8pm
- Banyule Community Health at 21 Alamein Rd, Heidelberg West from 10am – 4pm
- Banyule Community Health at 14 – 32 Civic Drive, Greensborough from 9am – 4pm
- Northland Shopping Centre at Target carpark via Murray Rd, Preston from 9am – 5pm
- CB Smith Reserve at 79 Jukes Rd, Fawkner from 9am – 4pm
Victoria’s active cases at four-month low
The number of active coronavirus cases across Victoria has fallen to just 98 cases – the first time that figure has been below 100 since June 19.
Of these 98 people, seven are health care workers.
Premier Daniel Andrews told today’s daily coronavirus press conference that the drop was a “positive sign”, despite concerns over a series of new cases in north Melbourne.
There are just eight people currently being treated for coronavirus in Victorian hospitals, none of whom are in Intensive Care Units.
Today’s seven new infections bring Melbourne’s rolling 14-day average to 5, while in regional Victoria that figure stands at just 0.2.
The number of so-called “mystery cases” remains at 10, all of whom are in metropolitan Melbourne.