Victoria records 38,000 cases amid warning of ambulance shortages

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Victoria has recorded 37,994 new Covid-19 cases and 13 deaths, as the virus continues to impact public services including ambulances.

The state's new infections include 18,503 from rapid antigen tests and 19,491 from PCR tests, the health department said on Tuesday.

There are 861 patients in hospital, 43 more than the previous day, including 117 in ICU and 27 on ventilation.

The state is managing 171,369 active cases.

The latest figures come as paramedics warn there will be delays in ambulances reaching people for the second time in a week.

People queue at a walk-in Covid-19 testing site at in Melbourne on Wednesday. Source: AAP
People queue at a walk-in Covid-19 testing site at in Melbourne on Wednesday. Source: AAP

Ambulance Victoria said it was experiencing "extremely high demand for ambulances" in metropolitan Melbourne.

"It is likely there will be a delay in an ambulance reaching you," it said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Our priority is to provide care to Victorians who require life-saving assistance."

After issuing its second "code red" in a week, AV asked Victorians to only use triple zero for emergencies and to contact Nurse On Call or visit their GP if their illness is not an emergency.

Meanwhile, the Department of Transport says there may be disruptions to services over "the next few weeks" with a large number of staff isolating.

"Due to driver availability, there may be changes to some public transport services," the department said.

"Passengers are advised to allow extra travel time. The Department of Transport continues to work closely with public transport operators to minimise the impact on passengers and to ensure the health and welfare of our staff and passengers."

The number of people using public transport is currently 29 per cent of pre-Covid levels.

The state government on Monday announced new pandemic orders will kick in at 11.59pm on Wednesday.

Under the changes, the state will mandate vaccine boosters for critical workers, indoor dancefloors will close and food workers will be exempt from isolation rules.

Health Minister Martin Foley said the orders were needed to counter the "significant spike" in infections and rise in hospitalisations.

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