WD News Publications


Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a current health issue affecting many countries across the world, including Australia.

The World Health Organisation has declared the current outbreak of the coronavirus a pandemic.  For the most up-to-date information regarding the coronavirus please visit the Department of Health and Human Services website.

Symptoms of novel coronavirus

The virus can cause an infection in people, including a severe respiratory illness. Symptoms can range from mild illness to pneumonia. Affected people may experience, fever, flu like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and headaches and difficulty breathing.

What's new

  • As of 5 April 2020, Victoria has 1,135 total confirmed cases (an increase of 20 since yesterday), 47 people are in hospitals including 11 people in intensive care. Sadly, eight people have died.  75 cases in Victoria have been identified from an unknown source (an increase of 2 since yesterday).  In total, 573 people have recovered.
  • Of the total 1,135 cases, there have been 911 in metropolitan Melbourne and 212 in regional Victoria. A number of cases remain under investigation.
  • The total number of cases in Australia is currently 5,467. That is expected to increase significantly in coming weeks unless people stay at home.
  • There have been 139 confirmed cases in healthcare workers, across at least 4 hospitals and 1 radiology clinic.
  • Healthcare workers and paramedics who test positive to coronavirus (COVID-19|) or are close contacts of confirmed cases can now self-isolate or self-quarantine in free hotel rooms under the Hotels for Heroes program.
  • There have been changes to the case definition. New guidelines are available on this site.
  • Up-to-date epidemiological data is available on our website.
  • The Victorian Government now has 1000 people working-around-the-clock on contact tracing

Key messages for the community

Everyone should follow good hygiene practices and other measures to protect against infections. These measures include:

  • Stay home. Protect the health system. Save lives. 
  • There are only four reasons to leave home: 
    • shopping for what you need - food and essential supplies
    • medical, care or compassionate needs 
    • exercise in compliance with the public gathering requirements 
    • work and study if you can’t work or learn remotely 
  • We’re asking Victorians to stop looking for loopholes. The advice is clear, by staying at home you’re saving lives.
  • New COVID-19 resources have been developed to provide guidance to GPs and health services including chronic disease managementpalliative and end of life care, and advice for immunisations services. 
  • New mental health and wellbeing advice has been updated with a number of electronic resources available. 
  • A detailed FAQ on the stay at home directions has been developed and published on this site.

Flu Vaccinations

  • All Victorians are encouraged to get their Flu Vaccination, now available from Pharmacies and GPs. The vaccination cannot protect you from COVID-19 but will ensure your immunity isn’t compromised further by contracting Influenza.
  • From 1 April, Victorian pharmacists can administer approved vaccinations outside of their normal location – through the mobile and outreach services of a hospital, pharmacy or pharmacy depot, increasing access to immunisations for all Victorians.
  • It is also easier for younger Victorians to get these immunisations from their local pharmacy. Appropriately trained pharmacists can now administer the flu shot to children 10 years of age and older.
  • Pharmacists will also be able to administer the measles-mumps-rubella, meningococcal ACWY and whooping cough-containing vaccines to people 15 years of age and older – protecting young people from deadly diseases that, combined with the threat of coronavirus, could overwhelm the state’s hospitals

For more information

If you develop symptoms:

If you are preparing to self-isolate you can find advice on what you should do here: www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/victorian-public-coronavirus-disease-covid-19#how-should-i-be-prepared-for-the-coronavirus-outbreak.

Emergency contacts:

  • If you suspect you may have COVID-19 infection call the dedicated hotline - 1800 675 398.
  • Anyone experiencing potentially life threatening symptoms should call Triple Zero (000).

Stay informed:


The following services can help you, or someone you know, access information during an emergency.

  • To access this information in other languages call the Translating and Interpreting Service on 131 450 (freecall) and ask them to call the COVID-19 infection hotline.
  • If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech/communication impairment contact National Relay Service on 1800 555 677 and ask them to call the COVID-19 infection hotline.