Department of Health

Chief Health Officer Update - 11 November 2022

11/11/22

COVID-19 Weekly Data

There were 16,636 COVID-19 cases reported in Victoria this week, an increase of 63.1 per cent on the previous week. The average daily number of new cases this week was 2,377, up from 1,461 last week.

The number of active cases in Victoria on Friday was 15,653, up from 9,607 the same time last week. 

The seven-day rolling average of patients with COVID-19 in Victorian hospitals is 274, an 18.1 per cent increase when compared to the same time last week. There are currently 277 COVID-19 patients in Victorian hospitals, including 8 COVID patients in intensive care and 1 cleared case in intensive care. There is 1 COVID-19 patient on a ventilator. The seven-day rolling average of patients in intensive care in Victorian hospitals is 11.

In the past three months, 3,365 COVID-19 patients were hospitalised in Victoria. 42.3 per cent of those patients had not received their third vaccine dose. 1,017 (30.2 per cent) were unvaccinated, 25 had received one dose, 383 had two doses, 851 had received three doses and 1,089 had received four doses. 

Of Victorians aged 50 to 64 years, 79.8 per cent have had their third dose and 29 per cent have had their recommended fourth dose. Of those aged over 65, 90.7 per cent have had their third dose and 66.7 per cent have had their fourth dose. 70.1 per cent of people aged 16 and over in Victoria are up to date and have had three doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

A total of 41 COVID-19 related deaths were reported to the Department in the past week. An average of 6 deaths were reported each day in the past week. There has been a 46.7 per cent decrease in the number of COVID-19 related deaths in the past month when compared to the previous month.

In the past three months, there have been 795 COVID-19 related deaths in Victoria. Of those deaths, 48.2 per cent had not received their third COVID-19 vaccine dose. 314 (39.5 per cent) were unvaccinated, 3 had received one dose, 66 had two doses, 151 had received three doses and 261 had received four doses.

The total number of COVID-related deaths in Victoria since the pandemic began is 5,900. The number of COVID-related deaths recorded in Victoria so far this year is 4,291.

COVID-19 epidemiological summary

Reported COVID-19 cases and hospitalisations increased again this week, driven by the emerging Omicron subvariants including BQ.1 and XBB.

There is currently no evidence to suggest these subvariants cause more severe disease. However, hospitalisation rates are likely increasing due to waning immunity from past vaccination and the ability of these new subvariants to escape immunity from past infection.

Cases increased this week across all age groups.

The overall number of COVID patients in intensive care remains low, however the daily average has increased by more than 50 per cent when compared to last week.

Victoria’s wastewater and clinical genomic surveillance program continues to track multiple emerging Omicron subvariants. 

The BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants, which have driven the previous wave, are no longer dominant, accounting for 48.1 per cent of clinical genomic sequences in the week ending 2 November. They have been replaced by the continued growth of multiple subvariants including BQ.1, XBB and BF.7 over the past 5 weeks, which now show a combined prevalence of approximately 24 per cent and BA.2.75 a prevalence of 25.3 per cent in clinical samples. BF.7 is another rapidly growing subvariant of BA.5.

A similar pattern is seen in wastewater surveillance with recent detections with widespread distribution of BQ.1 across Victoria. XBB, BF.7, BA.2.75 and their subvariants are also showing growth and increasing distribution across Victoria.   

As we are in a well-established wave, increasing community and public health actions will reduce transmission and the impact on illness, deaths and the health system. 

Steps to protect yourself and others

Protecting yourself is the best way to protect yourself and the community. If you don’t get COVID, you can’t spread COVID.

These six steps can help you stay ahead of COVID this spring:

  1. Wear a mask: a high-quality and well-fitted mask can protect you from the virus 
  2. Get your booster dose: new bivalent vaccines targeting Omicron variants are available at your GP or local pharmacy 
  3. Let fresh air in: open windows and doors when you can, it reduces the spread of the virus 
  4. Get tested: if you have symptoms, take a rapid antigen test 
  5. Stay at home: if you have COVID, you should stay at home for at least 5 days and until you have no symptoms 
  6. Talk to your doctor: if you are at risk of falling very sick, you may be eligible for COVID medicines. 

Rains impacting PCR testing sites

The opening hours of some COVID-19 testing sites have been impacted by recent heavy rain events in Melbourne and regional Victoria. 

Please contact your nearest testing site directly to confirm current opening times. Testing site locations and contact information can be found at Get a COVID-19 test.

To access the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Victoria, visit the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Victoria website or call the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples can also call the Victorian Aboriginal COVID Information Line on 1800 312 911. Callers will speak with Aboriginal staff who can answer questions about COVID-19 and direct them to relevant support services. The information line is open from 9am to 5pm, 7 days a week.

Reviewed 11 November 2022

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