Five new COVID cases recorded in Ballarat

Victoria has reported 1993 new cases of COVID-19 overnight, including more than 160 in regional Victoria.

Sadly, seven lives were lost on Friday, including a 15-year-old who had a number of health conditions.

The persistently high number of new cases brings the number of active cases in the state to 21,647.

Testing rates remained high in the last 24-hours, with 79,214 results received. Meanwhile, 40,386 vaccines were administered at state-run hubs.

At a press conference on Saturday, Covid-19 response commander Jeroen Weimar said 168 of the cases were recorded in regional Victoria bringing the total number of infections in the regions to just under 1500.

He said the majority of cases were the result of ongoing household to household transmission.

Of the cases in regional Victoria, 22 were recorded in greater Shepparton, 17 in greater Bendigo, 22 in Baw Baw shire, 17 in the Latrobe Valley, 16 in Mildura and 26 in greater Geelong.

Data from the Department of Health reveals five cases were recorded in Ballarat in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of active cases to 72.

Four of the new cases were recorded in the 3356 postcode and one in the 3350 postcode.

Three cases were recorded in Golden Plains and six in Moorabool. None were recorded in Hepburn or Pyrenees shires.

It comes as several new exposure sites were listed in Ballarat overnight, including Oscar's Hotel and Cafe and the North Star Hotel.

Mr Weimar said the virus was spreading amongst the unvaccinated, with well over two-thirds of the new infections in people who had not been jabbed.

"It is disproportionally impacting people who have not had their first dose, let alone their second dose," he told the media.

He added that new cases were not the result of super spreader events such as what was seen in earlier outbreaks but rather "a really slow rolling set of outbreaks as the transmission goes from one house to the next".

He encouraged people to continue to mask up, maintain hand hygiene and get tested if they have symptoms and said the best way out of the outbreak was to get vaccinated.

The news comes as Delacombe Primary School closed due to a confirmed case and an Alfredton Primary School student was admitted to hospital with the virus on Friday.

It was also announced on Friday that fully vaccinated people from NSW would be able to travel to Victoria before Melburnians can visit the regions, in what has been described as an "anomaly" as both states open up.

The Victorian government on Friday announced doubled-dosed people from "red zones" such as Greater Sydney will be able to enter Victoria without quarantining for 14 days from 11.59pm on October 19.

This story Five new COVID cases recorded in Ballarat first appeared on The Courier.