News Coronavirus Victoria and ACT record coronavirus deaths as national toll hits 30
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Victoria and ACT record coronavirus deaths as national toll hits 30

The man died at Canberra Hospital after contracting the disease. Photo: ACT Health
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Two more deaths from COVID-19 have raised the national coronavirus toll to 34 in the space of a few hours.

The tragic tally grew when four more people were categorised as coronavirus casualties in NSW, bringing the state’s death toll to 16.

Meanwhile, the ACT recorded its second coronavirus-related death, a man in his 80s who had pre-existing health problems.

The NSW deaths were all men, aged 61, 76, 80, and 91, NSW Health protection executive director Dr Jeremy McAnulty confirmed on Sunday.

“Our condolences go to the family,” Mr McAnulty told reporters in Sydney.

“That brings a total of 16 deaths in NSW.”

In the 24 hours to 8pm, NSW recorded 87 new cases, bringing the state’s total to 2580, Health Minister Brad Hazzard told reporters on Sunday.

Announcing two new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Canberra, ACT Chief Health Officer Kerryn Coleman said the man’s death was proof of the danger posed to vulnerable and elderly people.

“It is especially to protect these vulnerable groups that we all need to take the physical distancing measures we are implementing seriously,” she said.

Dr Coleman said another two people had been diagnosed with COVID-19 since yesterday, bringing the total number of people in Canberra to have contracted the disease to 93.

Of those cases, 18 people have recovered and 13 are in hospital.

Earlier, it was announced a woman in her 70s has died in hospital from coronavirus in Victoria, bringing the state’s death toll from the illness to eight.

State Health Minister Jenny Mikakos confirmed the death on Saturday.

“Currently there are 42 people in hospital, this is up from 37 yesterday and ten patients in intensive care which is up from 7 yesterday,” Ms Mikakos said.

There were an additional 30 cases of the virus since yesterday, bringing the total number of cases up to 1115.

Of those 209 cases were recorded in regional Victoria, she said.

It comes as some Victorians continue to flout coronavirus restrictions with police slapping 25 more people with fines across the state.

In the past 24 hours police carried out more than 700 spot checks at homes, business and non-essential services.

More than 390 of those checked were returned travellers and 99 of those recent arrivals were not at home when police turned up.

“That’s incredibly disappointing, those individuals are putting their fellow Victorians at risk,” Ms Mikakos said on Saturday.

She said people who had arrived from overseas last week were being quarantined at hotels.

“For those people that returned prior to the start those changes they are still required to self-quarantine at home. No exceptions,”

Officers have conducted more than 12,500 spot checks across the state since March 21.

People have also been urged not to hoard masks if they are fit and healthy.

“For well people leaving the house, masks are not necessary. If you are unwell, you should not be leaving the house, except to get medical assistance,” Deputy Chief Health Officer Annaliese Van Diemen said.

That comes amid confirmation community transmission cases hit 73, up from 11 on Friday.

The state’s team of “contract tracers” has grown to 1000 people which includes epidemiologists, nurses, administrative staff and public health professionals.

Each time a new case of coronavirus is diagnosed, the team tries to determine if there is a link to other cases and notifies potential contacts.

A community transmission happens when someone tests positive to the illness if they haven’t been overseas or have a connection to another positive case.

Ms Mikakos urged people not to get complacent and follow the restrictions because a vaccine is not available. She noted a lot of young people returning from overseas had been diagnosed with coronavirus.

Premier Daniel Andrews is expected to ramp up stage-three lockdown restrictions, which include no recreational fishing or golfing.

Meanwhile, the state’s opposition called for protective services officers to be temporarily redeployed to help with the virus response.

“PSOs shouldn’t be left babysitting empty train stations while police resources continue to be stretched across the state,” Opposition police spokesman David Southwick said.

Three of the eight COVID-19 deaths in Victoria were patients at The Alfred Hospital, with about 100 staff sent home for isolation since last week.

People can be fined $1652 if they leave home for non-essential reasons and businesses face a $9913 fine if caught doing the wrong thing.

-with AAP