Victoria posts 2108 cases, six deaths

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Another 2108 Victorians are spending Christmas Day in isolation after contracting COVID-19, as some testing sites close due to demand.

The state recorded a further six deaths with authorities managing almost 17,600 active cases as of Saturday.

There are 361 patients in Victoria's hospitals, slightly down on the seven-day average of 383.

There are 71 patients in intensive care, four fewer than Friday, and 42 on ventilation, a decrease of two.

More than 92 per cent per cent of Victorians aged 12 and over are fully vaccinated.

Health officials say the daily increase in infections came from more than 83,000 results processed by testers.

At least six testing sites in Melbourne became so overwhelmed they had to close by 9.30am.

Among the closed sites are The Alfred's walk-through, as well as Monash University and Royal Children's Hospital drive-through sites.

Other sites have long wait times, including Melbourne Showgrounds drive through with a three-hour wait. A number of other testing locations have closed for Christmas Day.

Meanwhile, dozens of cancelled domestic Christmas Eve flights have meant last-minute disappointment for thousands of travellers.

Around a dozen flights out of Melbourne Airport were affected, with more Jetstar and Qantas trips disrupted out of Sydney.

However many flights did take off as scheduled and further problems were not expected on Saturday.

The disruptions were caused by restrictions which have meant some airline staff must get tested and isolate.

It is believed some of Melbourne's latest cases have spread from Christmas carol rehearsals and performances at Melbourne's St Paul's Cathedral.

Members of the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Choir, the Melbourne University Choral Society, Box Hill Chorale, the RMP Brass Consort and the Melbourne Highland Pipe Band were all involved in the events.

The health department says seven new cases are linked to the choir and orchestra performing Carols in the Cathedral, a series of four concerts held last week.

It issued a reminder that singing can increase virus transmission, and said anyone thinking of attending group singing over Christmas should monitor for symptoms.

As of Friday all people aged over eight who are visiting hospitality, entertainment venues and offices must wear a face mask.

Masks will also be required at all major events with more than 30,000 patrons, including the Boxing Day Test at the MCG, but can be removed while seated outdoors.

Masks are already required in retail settings, for hospitality workers and on public transport, but not inside households.

The government is also recommending Victorians work from home over the festive season and hospitality venues are being asked to consider providing a seated-only service.

A lockdown is not being considered because of the state's high vaccination rate.

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