Victoria's daily Covid cases surge to daunting new high

Victoria's daily Covid-19 cases have surged to a daunting new high of 867 on Tuesday.

It is the first time during the outbreak the state's local cases have jumped higher than NSW, with NSW Health reporting 787 local infections on Monday.

There were a further four Covid-related deaths, taking the outbreak's toll to 29, the Department of Health said.

The state also wrongly reported Monday's total due to a software error, meaning the total was in fact 845 and not 705.

Premier Daniel Andrews is now overseeing the state's worst outbreak of the pandemic. Source: Getty
Premier Daniel Andrews is now overseeing the state's worst outbreak of the pandemic. Source: Getty

It comes as 11 local government areas were singled out for their low vaccination rates and surging case numbers.

Residents in Brimbank, Cardinia, Casey, Darebin, Greater Dandenong, Hobsons Bay, Hume, Melton, Moreland, Whittlesea and Wyndham will now benefit from a push for general practitioners and pharmacies to roll out the jab in those areas.

Premier Daniel Andrews announced grants of up to $10,000 for facilities in order to cover additional opening hours and more staff.

Melbourne's lockdown will remain in place until 70 per cent of Victorians aged over 16 are double-vaccinated, which is forecast for October 26.

A more significant easing of restrictions will occur when the 80 per cent double-dose target is met, forecast for November 5.

Andrews grilled in fiery ABC interview

Pressed by ABC News Breakfast host Lisa Millar who suggested his roadmap was too cautious and lacked immediate clarity in a way NSW's strategy does, Mr Andrews defended the upcoming steps.

"Well, Lisa, we're taking an approach that's based on public health advice. That's what has got us to this point," he hit back.

"That's what we'll continue to see, yes, more people in hospital, but less than otherwise would be the case.

"It's a very precious things, our health system, and we need to be careful to manage those additional patients. I'm not going to give to our nurses a fight they can't win.

"It will be very tough for them in the weeks and months ahead."

Victoria is expected to hit its 80 per cent single dose target imminently, which could bring an easing of restrictions as early as tomorrow.

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