Department of Health

Chief Health Officer Update - 16 December 2022

16/12/22

COVID 19 Weekly Data

There were 24,652 COVID-19 cases reported in Victoria this week, a decrease of 11 per cent on the previous week. The average daily number of new cases this week was 3,522, down from 3,970 last week.

The seven-day rolling average of patients with COVID in Victorian hospitals is 675, a 1 per cent decrease when compared to the same time last week. There are currently 638 COVID patients in Victorian hospitals, with 34 COVID patients in intensive care including 6 cleared cases. There are 5 COVID patients on a ventilator. The seven-day rolling average of patients in intensive care in Victorian hospitals is 26.

In the past three months, 4,410 COVID patients were hospitalised in Victoria. 41.5 per cent of those patients had not received their third vaccine dose. 1,349 (30.6 per cent) were unvaccinated, 39 had received one dose, 440 had two doses, 955 had received three doses and 1,627 had received four doses.

Of Victorians aged 50 to 64 years, 79.9 per cent have had their third dose and 31.3 per cent have had their recommended fourth dose. Of those aged over 65, 90.8 per cent have had their third dose and 67.9 per cent have had their fourth dose. 70.3 per cent of people aged 16 and over in Victoria have had three doses of COVID vaccine.

A total of 84 COVID-related deaths were reported to the Department in the past week. An average of 12 deaths were reported each day in the past week. There has been a 67.1 per cent increase in the number of daily COVID-related deaths in the past month when compared to the previous month.

In the past three months, there have been 604 COVID-related deaths in Victoria. Of those deaths, 41.7 per cent were unvaccinated and 48.2 per cent had not received their third COVID vaccine dose.

The total number of reported COVID-related deaths in Victoria since the pandemic began is 6,223. The number of COVID-related deaths recorded in Victoria so far this year is 4,625.

COVID-19 epidemiological summary

The current COVID-19 wave appears to have plateaued, with several key measures – including active cases, cases in hospital and cases in intensive care – decreasing slightly for the first time in almost eight weeks.

However, multiple variants continue to circulate in Victoria and the transmission risks increase over the holiday period due to social gatherings and events. The tips below for staying safe this summer are particularly important during this holiday period.

Hospital admissions decreased slightly this week, however the number of healthcare workers unable to work due to COVID-19 has increased. On Friday, 1,660 healthcare workers were unable to work due to COVID-19.

Early testing and diagnosis are essential to access COVID medicines.

Some 60 per cent of patients aged over 70 years who presented to Victorian emergency departments with COVID-19 were undiagnosed at the time of presentation, according to a recent study by the Department of Health.

It is critically important that people with symptoms continue to test for COVID-19 and that people who test positive, and are eligible for antiviral treatments, get those treatments as soon as possible. Early action will lessen the impact on the community, the health system, and other services.

Tips for staying safe this summer

Plan ahead this summer and consider the following tips to ensure you can enjoy the festivities safely.

  • Plan your party or family gathering outside when possible
  • Get tested if you have symptoms or you’re going to a party or family gathering
  • Keep homes well ventilated with windows and doors open
  • Wear a high-quality mask, especially where you can’t physically distance from others
  • Isolate for at least five days and until you have no symptoms
  • Check if you are eligible for COVID medicines
  • Get your next vaccine dose.
  • Protecting yourself is the best way to protect yourself and the community. If you don’t get COVID, you can’t spread COVID.

For more information on ways to protect yourself and others, visit the Coronavirus website.

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 16 December 2022

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