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Everybody in Victoria with coronavirus passing it on to another person on average

9News.com.au logo 9News.com.au 31/07/2020 Nick Pearson

Everybody in Victoria with coronavirus is on average passing it on to another person, Premier Daniel Andrews says.

The high reproduction rate of the disease is leading the state government to consider bringing in strict stage four restrictions.

"In terms of that effective reproduction rate, we are still hovering around one, maybe just under and what that means is that every positive case is infecting one other person," Mr Andrews said.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Daniel Andrews wearing a mask ahead of his press conference. © Getty Daniel Andrews wearing a mask ahead of his press conference.

"Unless we drive that number down, so that every second or every third person who has got it is infecting one other, then we will not see our numbers half and half again and half again.

"We will be in this limbo, where we've stopped it from getting completely out of control and our health system being swamped but we haven't been able to suppress it sufficiently."

Eight people died of coronavirus in Victoria in the past 24 hours, and another 627 people tested positive.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said it was dispiriting to see such big numbers every day.

"The stage 3 restrictions had a really significant impact and people should be gratified by the fact that is the case," Dr Sutton said.

"The effective reproduction number was probably at 1.75 or close to 2. It has come down to one.

"We can't sit with 400 or up to 600 cases a day ongoing. We have to drive it down even further."

Mr Andrews said one in four people with coronavirus were not home when visited by health and defence personnel yesterday.

He said that further restrictions were currently being considered.

People are seen exercising around 'The Tan' track on July 31, 2020 in Melbourne. © Getty People are seen exercising around 'The Tan' track on July 31, 2020 in Melbourne.

"We have community transmission that is too high, and we need to do that detailed analysis and potentially take further steps beyond the current framework," Mr Andrews said.

"That is exactly what I think Victorians would expect."

Mr Andrews said the government was now exploring a New Zealand-style complete lockdown.

Such a lockdown would force the closure of all businesses save for supermarkets, pharmacies and petrol stations.

It would also prevent people leaving their immediate neighbourhood.

a man riding on top of a building: A man rides his bike along a very quiet Southbank. © Getty A man rides his bike along a very quiet Southbank.

"Obviously, a step up in restrictions is a really significant measure but we are wanting it to be informed by evidence to the fullest extent possible, against that point of being proportionate," Mr Andrews said.

"There are really significant consequences for what you do, in terms of increased restrictions."

Victoria's Chief Health Officer Professor Brett Sutton said the restrictions would be a case of "balancing harms", because the disease and the lockdowns are both damaging to the community.

a group of people in uniform: A group of anti-maskers in Melbourne have been asked to move on by police. © Provided by Today A group of anti-maskers in Melbourne have been asked to move on by police.

You can get up-to-date information from the Federal Government's Coronavirus Australia app, available on the App Store, Google Play and the Government's WhatsApp channel.

Beyond Blue's Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service is a 24/7 service free of charge to all Australians. Visit the site here or call 1800512348

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