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COVID-19 UPDATE – 20 April 2020 – Modelling confirms staying at home saves lives

Apr 20, 2020 | News, Parliament


This situation is changing rapidly. It is important that you stay up to date with the latest information about coronavirus and the steps being taken to manage this health pandemic. Visit the DHHS website – https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus 

In this update:

  • Victorian modelling confirms staying at home saves lives
  • Links to current information
  • Health and wellbeing support


– Victorian modelling confirms staying at home saves lives – 

New state-based modelling shows staying at home and other physical distancing requirements are working to slow the spread of coronavirus, saving thousands of Victorian lives.

The modelling, undertaken by Monash University and the Doherty Institute, in collaboration with epidemiology experts in the Department of Health and Human Services, finds that if no physical distancing restrictions were in place, Victoria would have seen up to 58,000 new coronavirus cases every day at the peak of the pandemic, overwhelming our health system.

The data also reveals that if a business-as-usual approach had been adopted, 10,000 intensive care beds would have been required and as many as 9,200 Victorians would have been presenting to hospital every single day. Tragically, it also shows the immense human cost of the pandemic, with as many as 36,000 Victorians dying – that’s averaging 70 lives lost every day and up to 650 deaths in a day during the peak.

The modelling also shows that Victoria’s ‘Reff’ ’ number – the projected number of infections passed on by a person with coronavirus – has dropped to 0.5. If Reff’ is kept below one, an outbreak slowly wanes. If it is above one, it grows.

Thanks to current restrictions and the overwhelming number of Victorians doing the right thing, the modelling confirms that our curve is flattening. Victoria’s curve compares favourably with other countries that also acted early, like South Korea and New Zealand.

Together, our actions have made a real difference and slowed the spread of coronavirus in Victoria.

By acting early and decisively, the catastrophic outcomes we have seen in places like Europe and New York have not happened here. But there is still a long way to go.

Now is not the time for complacency. The modeling shows that if we were to lift restrictions too quickly or too broadly, coronavirus would spread rapidly through our community once again, overwhelming the health system and putting everything we have achieved at risk.

That’s why our message to Victorians remains the same: Stay home. Protect our health system. Save lives.

Any decision to ease restrictions after the current State of Emergency will be informed by public health experts and modelling, combined with international experience.

For more information please see the modelling at the DHHS website – https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus 
– Links to current information –

Please save the links below for current advice regarding the following:

State of Emergency

Testing Criteria 
Testing criteria continues to be updated as required. To stay up to date with the criteria please check the “Current Victorian coronavirus disease case definition” section on the DHHS website:

We encourage all Members of Parliament to share information from the DHHS coronavirus website or the verified websites that can be found at the bottom of the back: https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus

The Department of Health and Human services continues to update the website as quickly and frequently as needed and is the most relevant place for up to date information regarding the status of Victoria’s response –  https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus
– Health and wellbeing support –

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