Victoria State COVID-19 Cases Jump by 17

Victoria State COVID-19 Cases Jump by 17
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 17: Paul Skidone, manager of Southbank restaurant La Camera is one of the temperature testing customers . (Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

Victoria’s COVID-19 cases recorded a double-digit jump with seven cases linked to cruise ship passengers.

“Today we have 1319 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and that is an increase of 17 from yesterday,” Health Minister Jenny Mikakos said on April 18.

Nine of those new cases had been put in mandatory quarantine including seven people from the Greg Mortimer cruise ship, she said.

In positive news she said there were no new community transmissions in the past 24 hours across the state and they remained at 136.

However she warned numbers would continue to fluctuate from day to day.

“The battle is not over. I have not declared this mission accomplished,” Mikakos warned.

For those hoping to get back to normal soon she said restrictions would be reviewed in May when the state of emergency is due to expire.

“We’re going to have to remove those restrictions in a very thoughtful and careful way,” she said.

Mass gatherings including sporting events and concerts may not happen until next year.

“I don’t think we can expect big mass gatherings or events to be coming back to Victoria any time soon.”

It comes as a dozen partygoers and two bikies are among the latest fined for breaching COVID-19 restrictions in Victoria.

Two Mongols bikies were also caught leaving their Port Melbourne clubhouse after drinking there.

Up to 88 fines were issued across the state for breaches with more than 670 spot checks undertaken, police said on Saturday.

Since the rules were introduced on March 21 police have conducted more than 23,500 spot checks across the state.

The double digit jump comes after the state recorded a single COVID-19 case on Friday.

Expanded testing criteria for COVID-19 means anyone with symptoms of a new fever, chills or breathing problems - specifically a cough, sore throat or shortness of breath - can now be tested.

Up to 4000 people were tested on Friday, bringing the total number of tests 79,000 in Victoria.

By Caroline Schelle