One death from COVID-19, and 603 new cases

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One person has died and Victoria’s has recorded 603 new COVID-19 cases, according to today’s figures released by the Health Department.

The case number is a new record for 2021, and an increase of 36 on yesterday’s figure.

There were no cases listed as having been acquired overseas or interstate.

There are now 6000 active cases across the state. In total, 48,829 coronavirus tests were received in the 24 hours to midnight on Monday, and 40,811 vaccines were administered.

The figures come in the wake of Sunday’s state government release of the road map out of lockdown, with easing of restrictions pegged to state vaccination rates reaching 70 per cent or 80 per cent.

The figures follow last night’s decision by the state government to shut down the building industry for two weeks, citing a lack of compliance with public health orders.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.Credit:Darrian Traynor

More protests are planned in the city today after violent demonstrations outside the union CFMEU’s headquarters in Elizabeth Street over the issue of mandatory vaccination of construction workers.

Doctors have flagged that Victoria’s intensive care units will be forced to ration specialist staff and have them treat many more patients to cope if hundreds of seriously ill people hit hospitals by mid-December as predicted.

And federally, experts warned that mask-wearing will remain indefinitely in some settings, saying strict lockdowns will not protect COVID-free parts of the country from the pandemic forever.

But new data shows the rate of deaths from coronavirus so far this year is similar to a bad influenza season and significantly better than last year as vaccinations gain traction around the country.

For states sticking to border closures and tougher measures against COVID-19, a Doherty Institute sensitivity analysis that was presented at national cabinet on Friday found those measures would not be able to keep the virus out long term and community fatigue was a real risk.

“In reality, the national COVID-19 epidemic has been and will continue to be a ‘fire’ fought on multiple fronts,” the report said.

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