COVID-19 Information

Updated 16th September 2021

  • For the latest information on Coronavirus disease in Victoria, visit the Department of Health and Human Services website: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
  • If you are concerned about Coronavirus disease in Victoria, call the Department of Health and Human Services Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398. Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.
  • Coronavirus disease can spread after close contact with an infectious person, through droplets from a cough or sneeze, and touching of contaminated services. This is most likely to occur after travel to an affected country, or through living in a house with a person with the infection.
  • Victorians should now take steps to prepare for the possibility of transmission of coronavirus disease in Victoria in the coming weeks or months.
  • Protect yourself from Coronavirus by washing your hands regularly with soap and water; and try not to touch your face, including your eyes, nose or mouth. One way to become infected is to transfer the virus from a contaminated surface to your face or mouth by touching.
  • Practice good respiratory hygiene:
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. 
    • Cough into your elbow.
    • Dispose of tissues.
    • Wash your hands with soap afterwards.
  • Personal hygiene is an important protection against coronavirus disease and all respiratory illnesses – this includes washing hands regularly, especially after using the toilet and before eating.
  • Consider slowly stocking up on essential items, just in case you need to self-isolate due to coronavirus.
  • For additional information please also visit: https://www.coronavirus.com.au/

Assistance

Victorians self-isolating due to coronavirus (COVID-19) with no access to food and essential supplies will receive emergency relief packages under a program introduced by the Victorian Government.

The program will support people in mandatory self-isolation, who have little or no food, and no network of family and friends to support them. Each eligible household will receive a two-week supply of essential goods.

Food packages will include items such as long-life milk, pasta, cereal, canned vegetables and sugar. Personal care packages will also be distributed to eligible households and include soap, toothpaste and deodorant. Additional items may also be provided depending on the needs of the household, such as nappies or baby formula.

The packages will be delivered door-to-door, with other distribution points to be established as required. For people who are not eligible for the emergency relief packages, they are encouraged to be self-reliant and call on the help of family and friends wherever possible during the current pandemic.

The emergency relief program for those in mandatory self-isolation will be coordinated by the Red Cross in partnership with Foodbank Victoria and under the direction of the State Relief Coordinator.

It can be accessed by calling Victoria’s dedicated coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398. The hotline can also refer people to other support services if needed.

Businesses across the state can access information on dealing with COVID-19 by calling the Business Victoria hotline on 13 22 15.

Operators calling the hotline will be able to get information about support services, including those available through Business Victoria, which offers mentoring to help operators develop business continuity and recovery plans.

The hotline will provide the latest information on the response to COVID-19 and how this affects businesses, including how to access financial support available through the national stimulus package. In addition to calling the Business Victoria hotline, business operators can also find information at business.vic.gov.au.

Victorian Business Support Package

A new jointly funded package from the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments will give Victorian small and medium businesses the extra support and confidence they need to recover from the recent lockdown.

The new Victorian Business Support Package will deliver an additional $400 million in support to thousands of businesses, with funding to be split 50/50 between the Commonwealth and Victorian Government. 

The package includes a new $85 million Small Business COVID Hardship Fund and $156 million Business Continuity Fund, as well as delivering support for commercial tenants and landlords.

It will also build on Victorian Government support for licenced hospitality and alpine venues, with $70 million for the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021 and $9.8 million for Alpine Business Support.

The programs will be administered by the Victorian Government.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Victorian businesses had borne the brunt of the heavy cost of lockdowns that kept the state and Australia safe.

“Together we can and we will recover from this,” the Prime Minister said. “We’ve done it before, and we’ll do it again.

“Last year, Victoria and our nation faced heavy blows from COVID, but with the right supports in place our economy and businesses came back strongly and a million people returned to work.

“We will continue to do what is necessary to support Victorian businesses as we face the evolving challenges of COVID-19.”

The Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews said, “This package is all about jobs – protecting and growing jobs to support Victoria’s economic recovery.” 

“With this funding we’ll continue driving jobs and economic recovery here in Victoria, and for the nation.”

The Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the Morrison Government supported Victorians during the crisis and will continue to support them to the end of this crisis.

“Having battled five lockdowns Victorian businesses have been amongst the hardest hit in the nation,” the Treasurer said.

“No amount of support can make up for what business owners have experienced over the last year and half, but this latest package will support them as they reopen after this latest lockdown.” 

The Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas said, “We’re supporting Victorian businesses each step of the way as we continue to fight this pandemic.”

“We know small businesses have been doing it tough and this new fund will give them the support they need to recover.”

Five key elements make up the support package to help businesses deal with ongoing public health restrictions.

Business continuity fund

A $156 million Business Continuity Fund will be established to deliver $5,000 grants to up to around 30,000 businesses that remain impacted by capacity limits placed on businesses by necessary public health restrictions.

Twenty-four eligible sectors are covered by the fund including gyms, cafes, restaurants, catering services and hairdressers.

Recognising businesses located in the CBD will continue to be impacted due to restrictions on the number of staff allowed in office buildings, they will be eligible to receive an additional $2,000 recognising reduced foot traffic due to office density limits.

All recipients must have received or been eligible for the previous Business Cost Assistance Program.

Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021

The Licenced Hospitality Venue Fund will receive a $70 million boost, with grants of up to $20,000 to be made available to support licensed venues as their operations continue to be impacted by current restrictions.

These grants recognise that larger venues depend more on dine-in and have higher operating costs, so need more support than smaller operations.

Again an additional $2,000 will also be made available to the business if it is located within the CBD.

 To receive this funding, venues will need to have received or been eligible for the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021.

Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme and Landlord Hardship Fund

The package, to be fully funded by the Victorian Government, will deliver $80 million to provide support to landlords that provide rent relief to their tenants.

The Commercial Tenancies Relief Scheme will be reinstated to provide much needed rent relief to small to medium commercial tenants and their landlords with more details on the roll out to be provided by the Victorian Government soon.

Small Business COVID Hardship Fund

A new $85 million fund will be established to support small businesses who have not been eligible under existing business support funds.

Small businesses with a payroll of up to $10 million who have experienced a 70 per cent or greater reduction in revenue will be eligible for grants of up to $5,000.

Alpine Business Support Program

Alpine Business Support will receive a further $9.8 million to deliver grants of between $5,000 and $20,000 to 430 Alpine based businesses in recognition of restricted inter and intra-state travel during the peak winter season.

The funding also includes an additional $5 million support to alpine resort operators and management boards.

The Commonwealth and Victorian Governments continue to work together to support Victorians through this challenging time.

For more information visit: coronavirus.vic.gov.au/business-grants-and-support


Restrictions – Metropolitan Melbourne and City of Ballarat effective 11:59pm Friday 17th September

Curfew in Metropolitan Melbourne only: From 9pm to 5am, a person is not permitted to leave their home except for limited reasons

Stay at home unless:

• shopping for necessary goods and services (one person per household, once per day, a support person can accompany if required)

• caregiving or compassionate reasons

• authorised work or permitted education, or work interstate

• socialise or exercise (up to four hours, with one other person plus dependants if they cannot be left unattended. The other person can be from another household). Up to five people may gather from two households may socialize or exercise if everyone over age of 18 have had two vaccination doses.

• receive a COVID-19 vaccination

• other specified reasons (specific exemptions apply

5km travel limit is in place

Intrastate Travel

Travel limit of 10km from place of primary residence, except:

• to return home

• to access necessary goods and services where those goods and services cannot be accessed closer than 5kms from home.

• to visit an intimate partner

• to visit a person in your “single bubble”

• allowed to travel for authorised work (except construction) and permitted education

• work at an interstate location (where permitted by another state)

• care and compassionate reasons (specific exemptions apply)

• to get a COVID-19 vaccination if the appointment is at an adjacent LGA

Private gatherings: not permitted, intimate partner visits/single bubble visits permitted

Public gatherings:

• Permitted for personal training for up to two people plus the trainer

• Public gathering for social interaction for up to two people from separate households

• Public gathering of up to five people from two households if all persons aged 18 years or older have received two vaccine doses

Face coverings:

• must be carried at all times

• must be worn indoors and outdoors by Victorians aged 12 years or over except if at home, or when visiting an intimate partner’s place of residence or if an exception applies

• recommend primary school age children wear masks indoors and outdoors, except at home or if an exception applies

• exception for food and drink limited so that face coverings can only be removed to eat and to drink non-alcoholic beverage

Work:

If you can work from home, you must work from home

• Authorised workplaces and workers are permitted to attend onsite work

• Authorised workers are permitted to travel to and from work during curfew hours if needed

• A permit is required when leaving the home for authorised work or permitted higher education

Education and childcare

Early learning centres, childcare, family day care: Closed but open to vulnerable children, the children of authorised workers and children of single parents, if they cannot be supervised at home

Schools: Remote learning for most students but open to vulnerable children, and the children of authorised workers

Higher education and training: Closed, remote learning only unless permitted study

Ceremonies and Religious Gatherings

Religious gatherings and ceremonies

No in-person gatherings permitted. Broadcast permitted with maximum five people, must be the same five people for each broadcast.

Funerals

Funerals (indoor and outdoor): Permitted with no more than 10 people (and those workers necessary to conduct the funeral). Children under 12 months old are not counted towards this cap

Weddings

Weddings (indoor and outdoor): Not permitted unless end of life or for deportation reasons. Involves only 5 people (including the two people being married, celebrant, two witnesses)

Indoor Physical recreation & sport

Closed. Broadcast permitted with maximum of five people.

Hydrotherapy open for permitted purposes only

Outdoor Physical Recreation & Sport

Open: Outdoor playgrounds for children under 12 years with one parent/carer. Parent/carer cannot take mask off to eat or drink while supervising their children playing. QR code check in required.

Outdoor skateparks and outdoor gym equipment: Open

Community Facilities

Closed: Open for click and collect and essential services only

Creative Studios

Closed

Entertainment and Leisure

Indoor fixed seated entertainment: Closed, Up to five people can attend an entertainment venue to broadcast a performance.

Outdoor fixed seated entertainment: Closed, Up to five people can attend an entertainment venue to broadcast a performance.

Non-seated indoor venues: Closed, Up to five people can attend an entertainment venue to broadcast a performance.

Non-seated outdoor venues: Closed, Up to five people can attend an entertainment venue to broadcast a performance.

Arcades, escape rooms, bingo centres: Closed

Drive-in cinemas: Closed

Amusement parks: Closed

Casinos: Closed

Retail betting venues: Closed

Electronic gaming: Closed

Karaoke and Nightclubs: Closed

Sex on premises, brothels and sexually explicit venues: Closed

Public events and business events

Cannot proceed under these settings. Exceptions for professional sport where no crowds are present

General Retail

Essential retail: Open, DQ 1 per 4sqm Other/general retail: Closed (open for contactless click and collect only)

Hairdressing, beauty, personal care

Closed

Hospitality

Open for take-away only

Accommodation

Closed unless for permitted reasons, or shelter in place. No new bookings except for authorised reasons

Real Estate Services

Auctions: Closed (remote auctions only)

Inspections: Private inspections by appointment for for new purchase or end of lease permitted for one household only with agent staying outdoors during inspection. Current occupant cannot be present.

Tours and transport

Tours: Closed

Tour transport: Closed

Care Facility Visitors

Visitor restrictions:

• For permitted purposes only, including:

• To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing (including mental health support and support for people living with dementia)

• To support residents under 18 years of age

• As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act • To provide interpreter or informal language support

• For learning to support the resident’s care upon discharge • To provide end of life support to a resident (this also includes life threatening conditions)

• Non-essential contractors are restricted from entry

• No more than two visitors per day unless visit is for endof-life reasons. For end-of-life visits, two visitors are permitted at a time with no maximum daily limit.

• A group may exceed the “two visitors at a time” rule if dependants of a visitor are in the group and care for the dependants cannot be arranged.

• Prospective residents permitted to visit for:

• Inpatients in acute hospitals awaiting discharge to residential aged care facilities (RACFs) (noting this may need to be a nominated family member in some scenarios, not the inpatient).

• Residents of care facilities that are due to close and require support to find alternative accommodation prior to the closure of their current accommodation

Hospital Visitors

Visitors restrictions:

• For permitted purposes only, including:

• As a parent, guardian or carer of a child who is a patient in hospital

• To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing

• To support residents under 18 years of age

• As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act • To provide interpreter or informal language support

• For learning to support the resident’s care upon discharge

• As a carer of a patient with a disability

• Accompanying someone to the emergency department or outpatient clinic • As a partner of a pregnant woman or patient in a maternity ward

• To provide end of life support to a patient (this also includes life threatening conditions)

• Non-essential contractors are restricted from entry

• No more than two visitors per day unless visit is for end of live reasons. For end-of-life visits, two visitors are permitted at a time with no maximum daily limit. A group may exceed the “two visitors at a time” rule if dependants of a visitor are in the group and care for the dependants cannot be arranged.

Restrictions – Regional Victoria, effective 11:59pm Friday 17th September

Stay at home requirement

• no stay at home requirement

• removal of 5km travel limit

Intrastate travel limit

• allowed across regional Victoria

• movement between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria restricted to specified purposes:

• necessary goods and services (provided facility is closest facility to place of residence) • care or compassionate reasons (including bubble buddy/ intimate partner/)

• authorised work/education

• other specified reasons e.g. moving home

• to get a COVID-19 vaccination if the appointment is at an adjacent LGA

Travel to regional Victorian Alpine Resorts permitted provided visitors have had a negative COVID test within the previous 72 hours. Children under 12 years not included. Must be able to show evidence of a negative test as condition of entry into ski field. Workers are highly recommended to take a COVID test prior to arrival at the resorts.

Private gatherings

Not permitted, intimate partner visits / single person bubble permitted

Public gatherings:

Permitted for up to 10 people

Face coverings

• must be carried at all times

• must be worn indoors and outdoors by Victorians aged 12 years or over except if at home, or when visiting an intimate partner’s place of residence or if an exception applies

• recommend primary school age children wear masks indoors and outdoors, except at home or if an exception applies

• exception for food and drink limited so that face coverings can only be removed to eat and to drink non-alcoholic beverages

Work

If you can work from home, you should work from home. Office work – 25 per cent return or up to 10 people if total workplace is 40 or less, density quotient of 1 person per 4 sqm applies

Education and Childcare

Early learning centres, kindergarten, childcare, family day care:

• open for regional Victorian children

• open to children of metropolitan Melbourne authorised workers, single parents and vulnerable children

• twice weekly PCR testing for childcare workers moving between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria

Schools:

• open for Prep to Grade 2 and Year 12 only. Remote learning for other levels

• open to children of metropolitan Melbourne authorized workers and vulnerable children

• twice weekly PCR testing for teachers moving between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria

• density quotient of 1 person per 4 sqm applies in non-student areas. Face mask requirements apply to everyone 12 years and over.

Higher education and training:

Closed, remote learning only unless permitted study

Religious gatherings

Permitted with up to 20 persons per venue (and those workers necessary to conduct the ceremony)

Funerals

Funerals (indoor and outdoor): Permitted with no more than 20 people (and those workers necessary to conduct the funeral). Children under 12 months old are not counted towards this cap.

Weddings

Weddings (indoor and outdoor): Permitted with no more than 10 people (and those workers necessary to conduct the wedding). Children under 12 months old are not counted towards this cap

Indoor physical recreation and sport

Indoor Physical recreation facilities: Open with 10 people indoors.

Pools: Open. Up to 50 people outdoor and 20 people indoor. Hydrotherapy and swimming lessons may occur. Spas, saunas and steam rooms closed.

Play centres, indoor skateparks, indoor trampolining centres

Closed

Outdoor physical recreation & sport

Outdoor playgrounds, communal gym equipment and skateparks: Open

Outdoor personal training: Allowed with up to 10 people and a trainer

Community sport: Permitted outdoor training only with the minimum number required to train. Spectators are prohibited except one parent permitted to supervise children

Community recreation facilities: Outdoors only with up to 20 people per facility.

Community facilities

Open with maximum of 20 people per facility

Creative Studios

Open with maximum of 20 people per facility

Entertainment and leisure

Indoor fixed seated entertainment: Open with maximum of 20 people per space.

Outdoor fixed seated entertainment: Open with up to 25 percent capacity with maximum of 300 people per space, whichever is lesser.

Non-seated indoor venues: Open with maximum of 20 people per space

Non-seated outdoor venues: Open with up to 25 percent capacity with maximum of 300 people per space, whichever is lesser

Arcades, escape rooms, bingo centres: Closed

Drive-in cinemas:

• open (for households, intimate partner and bubble buddy)

• must remain in vehicle

• Density quotient of 1 person per 4sqm for all communal spaces

Amusement parks: Outdoor spaces align with outdoor non-seated – 25 per cent capacity with maximum 300 per space, whichever is lesser

Retail betting venue:

• open – in line with retail settings:

• Density quotient of 1 person per 4sqm

• COVID Check-In Marshal required

• masks mandatory at all times; cannot be removed for eating/ drinking in retail settings

Electronic gaming:

• open – in line with hospitality settings

• seated service only; outdoor cap of 20, indoors cap of 10 and density limits

Karaoke and Nightclubs: Closed

Sex on premises, brothels and sexually explicit venues: Closed

Business function facilities and conference centres

Function and conference centres: Indoors open with maximum of 20 people per space

Public and business events

Permitted to proceed in line with the restrictions in place in each setting

General retail

All retail: Open. Density quotient of 1 person per 4sqm applies. Check-in required Masks mandatory at all times and cannot be removed for eating/drinking in retail settings

Hairdressing, beauty, personal care

Open with a cap of 10 – masks must remain on for duration of service

Hospitality

Food and drink facility: Open for seated service only with maximum of 20 outdoors and 10 indoors subject to density limits

Food courts: Open for takeaway service only. Masks must be worn at all times and cannot be removed for eating or drinking in retail settings

Accommodation

Open to people who live in regional area. Bookings permitted for single households, intimate partners or single bubbles.

Real Estate Services

Inspections: Open for private inspections only with a maximum of 10 people plus real estate agent

Auctions: Open with a maximum of 10 people

Tours and Transport

Tourism spaces: Open with up to 20 people for outdoor tours. Indoor tours are closed

Tour transport: Open with up to 10 people per vehicle.

Care facilities

Visitor restrictions:

• For permitted purposes only, including:

• To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing (including mental health support and support for people living with dementia)

• To support residents under 18 years of age • As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act

• To provide interpreter or informal language support

• For learning to support the resident’s care upon discharge

• To provide end of life support to a resident (this also includes life threatening conditions)

• Non-essential contractors are restricted from entry

• No more than two visitors per day unless visit is for end-of-life reasons. For end-of-life visits, two visitors are permitted at a time with no maximum daily limit.

• A group may exceed the “two visitors at a time” rule if dependants of a visitor are in the group and care for the dependants cannot be arranged.

• Prospective residents not permitted to visit.

Hospital visitors

Visitors restrictions:

• For permitted purposes only, including:

• As a parent, guardian or carer of a child who is a patient in hospital

• To provide care and support for the resident’s physical and emotional wellbeing

• To support residents under 18 years of age

• As a nominated person under the Mental Health Act • To provide interpreter or informal language support

• For learning to support the resident’s care upon discharge

• As a carer of a patient with a disability • Accompanying someone to the emergency department or outpatient clinic

• As a partner of a pregnant woman or patient in a maternity ward

• To provide end of life support to a patient (this also includes life threatening conditions)

• Non-essential contractors are restricted from entry

• No more than two visitors per day unless visit is for end of live reasons. For end-of-life visits, two visitors are permitted at a time with no maximum daily limit. A group may exceed the “two visitors at a time” rule if dependants of a visitor are in the group and care for the dependants cannot be arranged.