With more than 20,000 active cases in the community and new ‘mutated’ strains taking hold, health experts are again warning Victorians to brace for a surge in deaths and hospitalizations from Covid over the festive period.
Data updated Friday showed the state recorded more than 24,000 cases over the past week, while there were 671 cases that required hospitalization over a seven-day moving average.
The chief health officer’s weekly report, also released on Friday, said the rolling average of 14 deaths per day represented a 62.5 percent increase from the previous month.
“The number of deaths related to Covid continues to rise and sadly this is expected to continue after periods of high community transmission,” the chief health officer wrote on Friday.
The seven-day rolling average in intensive care is 28, the update said, while there were 707 Covid patients in hospital as of Friday.
The report said while the current wave was driven by the Omnicron variant, a group of unidentifiable variants accounted for 21 percent of the cases.
“The genomic outlook is changing rapidly and it is difficult to predict that newer subvariants, particularly XBF, will outperform other subvariants over several weeks.”
“This has contributed to an increase in hospital admissions and has continued to challenge the healthcare system.”
Of the 637 Covid-related deaths recorded in Victoria over the past three months, 49.6 per cent were unvaccinated.
Similarly, of the more than 4,000 Covid hospitalizations over the past three months, 30.1 percent were unvaccinated.
Victorians are reminded they can get two free rapid antigen tests from any state testing center until December 31st.
Originally released as an update from the Chief Health Officer, it warns of skyrocketing Covid deaths