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Authorities on alert over mystery cases, Glenroy cluster grows

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“Our teams get on top of the cases and clusters that we know about. If we don’t know about it, we can’t get on top of it.”

A mystery case reported on Friday in Roxburgh Park has now been linked to the Glenroy outbreak.

Mr Foley also urged Victorians to get tested whenever they had symptoms.

“We really do need to get that 33,000 [per day testing] number back up to that 40,000 number to help us track down those chains of transmission,” he said.

There are now 14,000 primary close contacts connected to the current Victorian outbreak.

Three people are in hospital, with one person in intensive care.

Breakdown of Victoria’s latest cases

Of the 21 new local cases announced in Victoria on Saturday, 15 of the 21 cases are linked to the Glenroy outbreak.

Of these, two are students at Glenroy West Primary School, one is a staff member and 10 cases have been found in three households linked to the school.

One case is a household contact of a student who had previously been recorded as a case and one is a student from a school in Laverton who took a bus supervised by a previously-reported Glenroy case.

Another three cases are linked to Al-Taqwa College, including one student, one staff member and one household contact of a known case associated with that cluster.

Another two are linked to the Newport outbreak, in household contacts from two different households who are linked to two different players who attended a Newport football game.

The last case is a household contact of a previously-reported infection linked to the Caroline Springs Square Shopping Centre.

Exposure sites top 450 as Royal Women’s Hospital added

The entrance to the Royal Women’s Hospital was added as a tier 2 exposure site on Saturday afternoon, taking the number of venues and public transport routes listed by health authorities past 450.

A positive case visited the entrance to the hospital on August 6 between 7.25am and 8am, and again between 10am and 10.35am on the same day.

The hospital was among five tier-2 exposures added on Saturday, with the other entries including a supermarket in Melbourne’s north-west and a childcare centre in the inner-east.

Bosisto Street Residential Apartment Complex in Richmond. Workers from the Health Department were seen at the apartment building on Saturday morning in full protective gear.

Bosisto Street Residential Apartment Complex in Richmond. Workers from the Health Department were seen at the apartment building on Saturday morning in full protective gear. Credit:Luis Ascui

The Bosisto Street residential apartment complex in Richmond, just off Bridge Road, was added late on Friday for an exposure across an almost two-week period, after a case attended the building.

The complex is listed as a tier 2 exposure site between 12am on August 2 and 11.59pm on Friday, August 13, meaning anyone who visited the building during that period must isolate until they test negative for the virus.

Some residents at the complex will be considered tier 1 contacts and will need to isolate for 14 days.

A number of stores in Broadmeadows Central, Coles supermarkets in Glenroy and at the Richmond Icon building and Pickford’s Pharmacy in Carlton were also listed as tier-2 sites late last night.

Earlier on Friday, health authorities identified Chadstone Shopping Centre in Malvern East as a tier-2 exposure site.

Anyone who attended the major shopping centre between 4.26pm and 5.40pm on August 7 must get tested and isolate until they receive a negative result.

More drive-through vaccination clinics planned

A day after launching a campaign to vaccinate 1 million people over five weeks, the Victorian government said more drive-through vaccination centres would be opened in Melbourne’s north, west and south-eastern suburbs.

Mr Foley said drive-through vaccination sites would be created in Wyndham and Whittlesea.

“The drive-in centres which have gone so well in its first week, like in Melton, will be expanded.”

Friday was a record day for vaccinations in Victoria, with 29,490 doses administered across state clinics.

Traces of COVID detected in regional wastewater catchments

Mr Foley said there had been new detections of COVID-19 fragments in wastewater at both Shepparton and Lakes Entrance in the last week.

The suburbs of concern include Shepparton, Kialla and small parts of Shepparton North and Orrvale between Monday and Wednesday, and Lakes Entrance, Lake Bunga, Kalimna, Lake Tyres and the Lake Tyres Aboriginal Trust from Sunday to Wednesday.

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Anyone living or visiting these areas who has even the slightest of symptoms must isolate immediately and get tested.

In his daily update on Friday, Professor Sutton said the new wastewater detections were significant “as both areas do not have any active COVID-19 cases or current exposure sites”.

NSW to enter statewide lockdown

NSW will enter a snap, statewide lockdown after it recorded 466 new local cases and four deaths on Saturday.

Deputy NSW Premier John Barilaro told regional MPs that the entire state would enter a lockdown from 5pm on Saturday afternoon for at least seven days, an MP unauthorised to speak on the issue told The Age.

Nationals Minister Melinda Pavey confirmed the statewide lockdown via social media.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian had earlier announced that the 10-kilometre limit on movement in Greater Sydney would be cut to five kilometres from Monday.

Mr Foley said the situation in NSW was deteriorating daily and that only critical, end of life requests for entering Victoria were being approved.

Mr Foley said authorities had received 12,000 applications from Victorians who were stuck in NSW and about 6 to 7 per cent of all applications were being approved.

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Displaced Victorians who have been unable to return home from NSW have begun gathering at the Albury Showgrounds in caravans and tents as they try and complete 14 days of quarantine inside the “border bubble”.

“I can’t give those people any commitments as to what their particular circumstances are,” Mr Foley said.

“As tough and as personally disturbing as it is to see some of the really heartbreaking cases being declined, it’s sadly for a really good reason. We do not want to be where NSW is.

“We are prioritising those end of life and critical medical care decisions, as I think Victorians would expect us to.”

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With Cassandra Morgan

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