Melbourne's Covid lockdown extended for SEVEN days

Premier Daniel Andrews has announced Melbourne's lockdown will be extended by seven days.

The city's lockdown was set to end this Thursday, but it will now end on August 19.

On Wednesday, Victoria recorded 20 new local cases, 15 of which are linked to known outbreaks and six were infectious while in the community.

Victoria's Premier Daniel Andrews is pictured.
Victoria recorded 20 new Covid-19 cases on Wednesday. Source: AAP

Health authorities were scrambling to find the origins of the five unlinked cases and Mr Andrews said the mystery cases were the reason the lockdown had to be extended.

"This is very challenging for every single Victorian who would like to be going about their business, they would like to be open and have a degree of freedom," the premier said on Wednesday.

"That is simply not possible because of this Delta variant."

He said if the lockdown was lifted, Victoria would see an outbreak akin to what NSW was experiencing, where 344 new cases were identified, along with two deaths.

On Tuesday, regional Victoria was released from lockdown early as Mr Andrews said Covid seemed to be contained to just Melbourne.

Spread of the virus in Caroline Springs remains the main concern for authorities.

A healthcare worker who worked at the eye clinic at the Royal Children's Hospital is among those infected in this outbreak.

Victoria makes changes to the border bubble

Over the course of the pandemic, people living in border towns have been able to cross into neighbouring states relatively freely despite interstate travel being banned

However, since the outbreak has seeped out of Sydney and into the NSW regions, Mr Andrews announced border communities on the NSW-Victoria border will now require permits.

There are limited reasons why someone can cross the border in the border bubble, but from 1pm on Friday and enforceable from 6pm on Friday, movements will require a permit.

"Before anyone says 'Oh why, why would you do that', if this virus can get from Sydney to Byron Bay to Dubbo to Armidale to Tamworth, and only a fool would think that it couldn't get to Albury," Mr Andrews said.

"It absolutely can."

The government says it is to better track who is entering Victoria from NSW and make it easier to rapidly get information to contact tracers and to monitor for compliance.

More to come.

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