• COVID-19

COVID-19 update 23 July

Published 23 July 2020
Stage 3 Restrictions and Stay At Home directions have been given for all of metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire. The directions are for a period of six weeks, from 11.59 pm on Wednesday 8 July until 11.59 pm on Wednesday 19 August 2020.

The total number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Victoria has risen to 6,739 as of 22 July 2020, with 35 active cases recorded in Port Phillip. Visit the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) website for the latest daily update on COVID-19, and view their latest media release for case numbers by local government area.

Due to the continued increase in COVID-19 cases, the Victorian Government reintroduced Stage 3 Restrictions and Stay At Home directions for all of metropolitan Melbourne (and Mitchell Shire) for a period of six weeks, from 11.59 pm on Wednesday 8 July until 11.59 pm on Wednesday 19 August 2020.

The Victorian Government has extended the State of Emergency until 11.59pm on 16 August 2020, allowing for the enforcement of these directions and other vital public health directions from the Chief Health Officer.

Under Stage 3 Restrictions, everyone is instructed to stay at home, to protect our health system and save lives. This means there are only four reasons to leave your home:

  1. Shopping for food or other essential items
  2. To seek medical treatment, for compassionate reasons or to provide care giving
  3. For exercise, which should only be done locally, and is limited to outdoor exercise only and with only one other person or members of your household
  4. For work or education, if you cannot work or study from home.

Otherwise, you must stay home.

People who live in metropolitan Melbourne are now required to wear a face covering when leaving home, unless a lawful exception applies. A face covering can be either a face mask or a cloth mask and needs to cover both the nose and mouth. If you cannot purchase or make a face mask, an alternative form of covering such as a scarf or bandana may be used.

Wearing a face covering protects you and our community by providing an additional physical barrier to COVID-19. So if you’re leaving home for one of the above four reasons, please remember to wear a face covering. A fine of $200 may be issued to people who don’t do so (without a valid reason for exception).

The reinstatement of Stage 3 Restrictions also means that all playgrounds, skate parks, outdoor gyms and fitness stations in Port Phillip are closed for six weeks from 11.59 pm on Wednesday 8 July.

Libraries and community venues are closed, except for essential public support services like food banks.

For a full list of venue closures and service changes in the City of Port Phillip, see Events, Service and Program Changes.

For more information on Stage 3 Restrictions, see the DHHS directions issued by the Chief Health Officer on Victoria’s restriction levels.

Victoria Police is issuing fines for breaches of these restrictions. To report any breaches of COVID-19 restrictions, call the Victoria Police Assistance Line on 131 444.

DHHS key messages for the community

  • Residents of the priority suburbs and in the current restricted postcodes will receive free testing – with or without symptoms. For more information view the DHHS Response to outbreaks page.
  • People who are asymptomatic and awaiting test results do not need to self-isolate. But if you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms you should self-isolate.
  • Residents of these suburbs should not seek asymptomatic testing from their general practitioner, rather visit a site listed on the DHHS Getting tested webpage.
  • If you feel unwell with any symptoms of COVID-19, however mild, you should stay home and get tested. If you have any fever, chills, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose, and loss of sense of smell or taste – stay home, don’t go in to work and don’t visit friends and family. Get tested and stay at home until you get the result. View the DHHS testing map for locations.

Activity restrictions

Under the reinstated Stage 3 Restrictions, the following limits on gatherings, movement and activities now apply:

  • No more than two people (or your household group) may gather in public
  • Community sport training and competition cannot occur within the Melbourne metropolitan area, and if you live in this area you cannot participate in community sport elsewhere
  • Indoor sports centres including gyms, training facilities and pools will be closed
  • Outdoor sport facilities will be closed, except for facilities where people can exercise with no more than one other person or members of your household while maintaining 1.5 metres distance. Equipment should not be shared, and communal facilities (including outdoor fitness stations) cannot open. Personal training outdoors can occur but is limited to two participants plus the instructor
  • Some recreational activities are permitted, subject to conditions, including fishing, boating, tennis, golf and surfing
  • Galleries, museums, historic sites, zoos, outdoor amusement parks and arcades, play centres, indoor and drive-in cinemas, concert venues, theatres, auditoriums, arenas, stadiums, casinos and gaming venues will be closed
  • Cafes, restaurants, pubs, clubs and bars are permitted to offer takeaway only
  • Beauty and personal care services will be closed, apart from hairdressers and barbers
  • Real estate auctions can be done remotely, and house inspections only by appointment
  • Weddings are limited to five people (the couple, two witnesses and a celebrant)
  • Funerals are limited to 10 people (plus those conducting the service)
  • Religious ceremonies and private worship can only occur online, with a maximum of five people to conduct the ceremony
  • Holiday accommodation and camping facilities will be closed except for those who reside there for emergency accommodation or work purposes.
  • No new holiday travel can be undertaken (but if you’re already holidaying you can complete that holiday)
  • You cannot visit a second residence outside of the restricted areas

Additional restrictions have also been put in place:

  • You cannot have visitors to your home except for caregiving or compassionate reasons or receiving services.
  • You can no longer visit friends and family who live at another household, except to see your intimate partner, or for caregiving or compassionate reasons, or providing services.

Visit the DHHS website for the latest advice on Victoria’s restriction levels.

Reduce the risk

Continue to take actions to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection to yourself and the community including:

  • observing physical distancing by keeping 1.5 metres between yourself and others
  • practising good hygiene and washing your hands regularly
  • limiting your time away from home and reducing the number of trips you make whenever possible
  • covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (if you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow)
  • staying home if you feel at all unwell.

If you need to continue going to work and can’t work from home, you can still go to work. If you do, please remember that following preventative measures is even more important and you should continue to practice good hygiene and physical distancing.

If you are unwell:

  • self-isolate at home
  • do not go to public places
  • do not attend work or schools
  • do not visit aged care or child care facilities.

All travellers arriving at Victorian airports or maritime ports from overseas will immediately go into mandatory quarantine for 14 days.

Expanded testing for COVID-19

Expanded testing for COVID-19 is available across Victoria.

Anyone who has any of the following symptoms, however mild, is encouraged to seek advice and get tested:

  • fever
  • chills or sweats
  • breathing problems such as shortness of breath
  • cough
  • sore throat
  • runny nose
  • loss of sense of smell or taste.

In certain circumstances headache, muscle soreness, stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea may also be considered.

Feeling tired or fatigued is common during many illnesses, including COVID-19. If you are feeling tired AND have any of the above symptoms, you should seek advice about getting tested for COVID-19.

Visit DHHS for advice and information on how and where to get tested, including pop-up testing sites operating at various locations across Victoria.

If you suspect you may have COVID-19, you can call the dedicated hotline 1800 675 398.

Translated resources

The Victorian Government has provided translated coronavirus information, available online in a number of languages. For more information, view the translated resources on the DHHS website.

COVIDSafe app

The Australian Government recommends that all Australians download the COVIDSafe app, to help speed up contacting people exposed to COVID-19. The more Australians that connect to the COVIDSafe app, the quicker the virus can be traced.