Coronavirus: Six new COVID-19 cases recorded in Victoria but no lockdown for now

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews.
Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews. Photo credit: Getty Images

There are six new previously unreported cases of COVID-19 in Victoria, the state's health authority has revealed - but no lockdown for now.

In a press conference on Wednesday morning, Victoria's Acting Premier James Merlino revealed there were 11 new local coronavirus cases - though five of them were already known about on Tuesday.

The ABC reports each of these cases has strong links to others within the cluster.

The announcement means there are now 15 active cases related to the cluster, with 24 infected people in the state overall.

While no lockdown was called on Wednesday, Merlino said the next 24 hours would be "critical" and vowed to provide updates as soon as he knew.

"The message this morning is it's good that everyone is linked at this stage but we are concerned about the number and also about the kind of exposure sites," he told reporters.

"The next 24 hours are going to be critical if we're going to have to make further changes beyond the changes we announced yesterday."

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton says authorities had run down "multiple generations of transmission" over the past 48 hours, which was "fantastic" - but warned exposure sites going back several days were "a concern".

"There has been a lot of chasing to be done because we have had those individuals out in the community for some days in the past, so there are potential exposures there that relate to some days ago that I get to potentially play out new cases."

Prof Suttion said just 80 of a potential 300 primary contacts have received their COVID-19 results back, with the rest coming back on Wednesday. He says these results will give them more information about the scale of the outbreak.

"The exposure sites that they then generate, how many close contacts they might have and how long they have been in the community - they are all factors we need to consider."

More than 26,000 people sought a COVID-19 test on Tuesday, with testing centres expected to be busy again on Wednesday after it was revealed thousands of AFL fans may have been exposed to a case who attended a game.

Testing capacity is now being ramped up, with more than 40 sites in metropolitan Melbourne open with extended testing hours. Work is being carried out to add four more testing sites.

In an appearance on ABC Melbourne on Tuesday night, Sutton confirmed there had been new cases on Tuesday but said it was too early to tell if there would be more.

"We've got a number of primary close contacts that we are following up with now, so we have to be alive to the possibility that more of those will be confirmed positive."

He said all the primary close contacts are in quarantine and the outbreak isn't out of control.

This comes after COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed the quarantine-free travel bubble between Victoria and New Zealand would be paused from 7:59pm (NZT) on Tuesday for 72 hours.

When asked if 72 hours was long enough, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said on Tuesday it was for now and authorities will consider extending it if the situation changes.

"We will keep an eye on it on a daily basis. If we think there is an indication to extend it, we wouldn't hesitate to update our advice."