Victoria’s COVID case today: Testing sites begin to collapse as new infections jump in the thousands on Wednesday
Victoria’s COVID-19 cases have jumped in the thousands again, as testing pressure continues with dozens of sites now closed.
As of Wednesday, 17,636 cases were recorded, which is an increase of more than 3,000 from the 14,020 infections on Tuesday.
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The health department has also confirmed 11 other COVID-related deaths.
Hospitalizations have seen a further disturbing increase from 75 and are now 591 and of these, 53 are in intensive care and 20 on ventilators.
More than 92.9% of Victorians over the age of 12 received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine and 11% also received their third.
Omicron is now the most dominant variant in the condition, accounting for 76% of cases.
More than 50 closed test sites
A total of 54 testing centers have been temporarily closed in Victoria to try to allow labs to process COVID-19 tests pending Christmas time.
Testing commander Jeroen Weimar said that due to the pressure the positivity rate is putting on pathology labs, four of the private sector partners have suspended their testing centers.
The 54 centers involved are operated by 4Cyte, ACL (Australian Clinical Labs), Melbourne Pathology and Dorevitch.
âThese sites will be suspended for the next few days,â he said.
âTheir labs continue to work 24/7 to deal with the backlog they’ve built up over the Christmas and New Years period.â
State test sites will continue to operate.
A list of private pathology centers affected by the closures can be found on the website of the Ministry of Health.
Mr Weimar begged all Victorians considering having a PCR test to do so only if they are symptomatic or if they have returned a positive rapid antigen test.
âWe don’t have the bandwidth, we don’t have the discretion to offer travel tests or various other tests to people to make sure they’re still doing fine,â he said.
“This is what the rapid antigen test system is for now.”
The test commander has told anyone who cannot get a PCR to “keep trying” but also to count their days of isolation from the result of their rapid test.