Victoria will implement mandatory testing for all returned travellers in hotel quarantine.
Victoria is the only state that has been testing returned travellers twice – on day 3 and day 11 – but from today, the day 11 test will be a mandatory requirement to be eligible for release after 14 days.
Those who refuse to comply with testing will be required to remain in quarantine for a further 10 days – 24 in total – to ensure they pose no risk of introducing coronavirus to the Victorian community.
The Victorian Government signed legal directions last night, which ensures the small number of travellers who are currently in hotel quarantine who have declined to take the test, have now been tested and the processing of results has been prioritised.
Victoria has managed over 19,000 returned travellers through hotel quarantine with less than 1 per cent returning a positive result during their quarantine period.
The Victorian Government’s Suburban Testing Blitz has seen thousands of Victorians in our hotspot suburbs tested for coronavirus this week.
Residents in Keilor Downs, Broadmeadows, Maidstone, Albanvale, Sunshine West, Hallam, Brunswick West, Fawkner, Reservoir and Pakenham have received free testing – with or without symptoms and more than 11,156 samples have been collected since Thursday.
The team of testers have been zeroing in on community transmission with a fleet of mobile testing vans – allowing people to not only get tested in their own community, but in their own street and even at their front door.
Victorian pathologists have been processing up to 22,000 tests a day and with the help of labs in New South Wales, South Australia, Tasmania and Queensland, we’ve increased that capacity to at least 25,000 tests every single day.
From today, in an Australian first we will commence the collection of saliva samples to bring an easier sample collection and testing method to our hotspot suburbs and hotel quarantine.
Australian Defence Force personnel have also landed in Victoria to assist with our testing blitz and the transportation of pathology samples interstate when required. A massive squad of 1000 doorknockers will also continue their outreach, going door to door to ensure locals have the latest health advice.
The Victorian Government is urging locals in these priority areas to get tested – particularly if you have symptoms.
We all have to do our part to keep our families and our communities safe.