COVID-19 Information

Updated 25 March 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.

Businesses can also access assistance from the government’s economic survival and jobs package.

The Government will now defer payroll tax for businesses with payrolls up to $10 million for the full 2020-21 financial year.

As part of the $1.7 billion Economic Survival Package, the Victorian Government has announced a $500 million package to assist people who have lost their jobs at this difficult time.

Applications are now open for the Victorian Government’s Business Support Fund, providing $10,000 grants to help small businesses survive the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and keep people in work. To apply and for more information, please visit business.vic.gov.au

Under the Working for Victoria Fund, displaced workers will be eligible to apply for different types of work. This presents opportunities for paid work and an opportunity to contribute to Victoria’s ability to manage this event and support the community.

Some displaced workers will have skills that can be readily transferred to new roles. The Government can also assist skills development or help people in obtaining immediate accreditation to commence work.

The Government will work across the public sector, local government, the not-for-profit sector and key private sector employers to facilitate job matching. Businesses that need workers can get in touch at business.vic.gov.au.

There will be a moratorium on evictions until 28th March 2021 for residential and commercial tenants who are experiencing financial distress due to the impact of coronavirus.

Every student will get the support they need during this period. We will provide a device to every child that needs one as well as free internet access to thousands of Victorian students.

Schools will contact students and their families in the first week of Term 2 to determine their need to access the internet and devices such as laptops and tablets.

Priority for internet-enabled SIM cards and dongles will be given to senior secondary students, students in bushfire affected areas, and families who cannot afford an internet connection at home.

The Government has also announced that a new $1500 payment will be available for those who have a confirmed case or are a close contact and who can’t rely on sick leave. This is about making sure there’s no financial reason for these people not to isolate and to go to work instead.

The Government will now extend the scheme to ensure that as soon as a person is tested, they will be eligible for a $300 support payment from the Victorian Government – as long as they meet the eligibility of the existing scheme.

This will ensure workers don’t have to pay the price for following health advice while they are waiting for their results – meaning they can afford to isolate immediately and avoid spreading the virus further through workplaces.

Over $1.1 billion in cash grants will support small and medium sized businesses that are most affected by coronavirus restrictions including $822 million as part of the third round of the Business Support Fund.

Around 75,000 eligible businesses with payrolls up to $10 million will receive grants of $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000 depending on their size. More than 108,000 businesses have already shared in $1.47 billion from the first two rounds of Business Support Fund grants.

To support our bars, restaurants, pubs, clubs, hotels and reception centres, the Government will establish a $251 million dedicated Licenced Venue Fund, with grants of between $10,000 and $30,000 for licenced venues of all shapes and sizes. The Government is also providing further relief by waiving liquor licence fees for 2021.

Trips to Victoria’s ski fields haven’t been possible for thousands of families this year, so the Government will give businesses in our alpine resorts the support they need with with grants of up to $20,000 to help cover their resort fees, saving them a combined $4.3 million.

The Government will also partner with local business groups and chambers of commerce, with grants of up to $20,000 so they can help their members adapt and find their feet in a COVID Normal world.

The Government will also provide a further $137 million in waivers and deferrals of charges including liquor licence fees, the congestion levy and increases to the landfill levy. The 50 per cent stamp duty discount for commercial and industrial property across all of regional Victoria will be brought forward to 1 January 2021 and the Vacant Residential Land Tax will be waived for properties that are vacant in 2020.


COVID Safe Summer

Facemasks

Must be carried at all times.

Masks are mandatory when travelling on public transport or when travelling in a commercial passenger vehicle (unless a lawful exemption applies), by visitors to a hospital and by visitors to a care facility (while indoors). Not required in retailed settings

Any person diagnosed or suspected of having COVID-19, or who is a close contact of someone diagnosed with COVID-19, must wear a face covering if leaving home/accommodation for a permitted reason, such as medical care. Face coverings are recommended, but not mandatory, when leaving home and physical distancing cannot be maintained, for example, while shopping.

Reasons to leave home

No restrictions on reasons to leave home.

Employment

Workers may attend onsite as required. On-site office work will no longer be capped.

Gatherings

Public gatherings: Up to 200 people can gather in public from any number of households, infants under 12 months are not included in the cap.

Visitors to the home: Up to 100 visitors can visit a home in a day (infants under 12 months are not counted in the cap). Visitors may be from any number of households and may visit either together or separately. Front and backyards are considered part of the home

Schools

  • Schools: Onsite learning for all levels.
  • Childcare and kinder: open
  • Higher education and TAFE: Return to campus for students and staff for summer programs.

Sport and Recreation

Indoor physical recreation and community sport: No patron caps with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm for each space. No caps on gym and exercise classes (other than limits imposed by density quotients) COVID Marshals required when gyms are staffed. At times when gyms are unstaffed, a density quotient of 1 per 4 sqm applies. Signage must state the number of people permitted inside, wipes and disinfectant must be supplied for use by patrons, and electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system is required (28-day compliance amnesty). Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.

Outdoor physical recreation and community sport: No cap for outdoor physical fitness classes other than density quotient of 1 per 2sqm.
electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system is required (28-day compliance amnesty). Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online. Pools, spas, saunas, steam rooms and springs: Indoor venues open with a density quotient of 1 per 2 sqm. Outdoor pools open with a density quotient of 1 per 2 sqm.Electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system is required (28-day compliance amnesty).

Community Venues and Facilities

Community venues and facilities including libraries and toy libraries: No patron caps with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm. Must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Creative arts facilities: No patron caps with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm, all venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system=(28-day compliance amnesty).

Eating and Drinking Out

Hospitality: Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm for indoor and outdoor hospitality venues. No requirement for seated service. All venues are required to use the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system for electronic record keeping (venues will have a 28-day compliance amnesty).

Food courts: Indoor and outdoor food courts open with a density quotient of 1 per 2 sqm. No patron cap for indoor food courts

Shopping, retail and personal services


Retail: (e.g. supermarkets, other retail) Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm, with record keeping where practicable.

Hairdressing, beauty and personal care services: Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm applies, mandatory use of electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Real Estate services: Inspections and auctions operating with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm, mandatory use of electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Entertainment

Seated entertainment venues (indoors and outdoors) including cinemas: Open, up to 75 per cent of fixed seated capacity with maximum patron cap of 1000 people, density quotient of 1 per 2sqm in foyers, bars, bathrooms. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty) Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online. Arrangements for large events determined on an individual basis under the Public Events Framework.

Indoor non-seated venues (such as galleries): Open, up to 75 per cent total capacity with maximum patron cap of 1000 people. Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty) Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online. Arrangements for large events determined on an individual basis under the Public Events Framework.

Outdoor non-seated entertainment venues (such as Zoos, live museums): Open, density quotient of 1 per 2sqm. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty). Group limits removed. Indoor spaces at outdoor venues open, subject to restrictions relevant to the space (e.g. hospitality or retail). Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.

Arcades, escape rooms, bingo centres: Open, no maximum patron caps and a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm applies all venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty) Drive in cinemas: Open, in areas outside of vehicles density quotient of 1 per 2sqm applies. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty) In venues not using electronic record a density quotient of 1 per 4 sqm applies. Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.

Amusement parks: Open, up to 75 per cent of venue capacity. Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm applies indoors and outdoors. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty). Venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.

Gaming: Open, with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm and no seated service requirement. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Adult entertainment: Brothels and sex on premises venues open, with a density quotient of 1 per 2sqm and no maximum patron limit.
All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty). Strip club venues open, with a density quotient of 1 per 2 sqm and no seated service requirement. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Nightclubs: Open, standing service permitted. Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm on a dancefloor with no maximum patron limit. Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm elsewhere in the venue, with no maximum patron limit.
All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty).

Public events

Public Events may occur in accordance with the Public Events Framework, for Tier 1 and Tier 2 events an application and approval process apply.

A public event is an organised public gathering for a common purpose which is conducted on a one-off or periodic basis, it may be open to members of the public, publicly announced or advertised, and may be subject to specific license, approvals or permits.

The Public Events Framework applies to events in three categories:
Tier 1: highly complex and involving more than 5,000 attendees
Tier 2: moderately complex involving 500-5,000 attendees
Tier 3: low complexity and involving 500 attendees or less

The Public Events Framework enables applications to be made by event organisers to hold an event that falls within Tier 1 or Tier 2 events. Tier 3 events can be held in accordance with published guidelines. Other risk factors may mean that an event is classified at a higher tier and will require approval to go ahead.
Public health advice will inform the approval of Tier 1 or Tier 2 events, based on the epidemiological conditions and broader restrictions at the time.

All events will be considered on application under the Public Events Framework and there are no pre-defined limits on the nature or size of events.

Private events such as weddings and funerals, routine religious gatherings and ceremonies, and public gatherings for ordinary, day-to-day activities are subject to the publish restrictions limits and not covered by the Public Events Framework. The Stay Safe Directions (Victoria) and Restricted Activity Directions (Victoria) continue to apply to these day-to-day event activities and gatherings.

Tourism

Accommodation: Bookings restricted to the private gathering limit. The person or household booking the accommodation can have up to 100 visitors.

Tourism spaces and groups: No patron cap on tour groups. Masks must be worn on tour transport. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty). Intrastate travel: Allowed. Interstate travel: Continued international border controls. State border controls activated in case of outbreaks.

Ceremonies and Special Occasions

Weddings: No maximum attendee caps indoors or outdoors, record keeping requirements as per the venue where the event is held. If held in a private residence, up to 100 guests can attend.

Funerals: No maximum attendee caps indoors or outdoors, record keeping requirements as per the venue where the event is held. If held in a private residence, up to 100 guests can attend.

Ceremonies and religious gatherings: Density quotient of 1 per 2sqm applies. All venues must use electronic record keeping using the Services Vic App or a government API-linked digital system (28-day compliance amnesty). Indoor and outdoor ceremonies can occur at the same time.

Care facilities

Visitors: No restrictions on purpose, number or time limits of visits. Symptomatic (e.g. sore throat) individuals*except those symptomatic due to underlying or chronic conditions) , close contacts and returned international travellers excluded from visiting..

Hairdressers:
Permitted to attend to provide hairdressing service to residents.


Quarantine

All travellers returning from overseas to Victoria will now be placed in enforced quarantine for a self-isolation period of 14-days to slow the spread of coronavirus.

This will see returned travellers housed in hotels, motels, caravan parks, and student accommodation for their 14-day self-isolation period.


If you have a coronavirus disease question and need a translator:

  • First call 131 450
  • Then request the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services #Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398
  • Keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies