Australia records over 8,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Australia has surpassed 8,000 on Thursday.

As at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, a total of 8,001 cases have been reported in the country, including 104 deaths and 7,090 recovered cases, according to the Department of Health.

The department also said that the number of new cases in last 24 hours is 86.

Of the new cases, 77 were in Victoria but five previously confirmed cases were removed from the state’s tally, resulting in a net increase of 72.

“There have been 332 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Victoria that have been acquired through unknown transmission. There are currently 415 active cases in Victoria,” said a media release from the Department of Health and Human Services in Victoria.

“This is the sixteenth consecutive day of double-digit case growth in Victoria, with a continuing and concerning number of new cases associated with transmission in households and families.”

The Victorian government has announced targeted restrictions for a number of Melbourne suburbs in 10 postcodes that have experienced a spike in positive COVID-19 cases.

From Thursday, people who live in these restricted postcodes are only allowed to go out for four reasons: shopping for food and supplies, medical care and caregiving, exercise and study or work if unable to work or study from home.

Also on Thursday, the Northern Territory (NT) has confirmed its first new case in more than 80 days after a Darwin man who returned from overseas via Melbourne tested positive to the virus.

Addressing the continued spike in cases in Victoria on Thursday, Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said that he was confident that a progressive opening of domestic borders could happen at the same time as local outbreak is contained.

It comes after several state governments announced that Victorians will be excluded from their plans to re-open borders in July.

“What we’re trying to do is make sure that Australians get their lives back – get access to their families back – but at the same time, we keep each other safe, which is why we have this model of rapid testing, rapid tracing and local containment where there are outbreaks,” Hunt told Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) television.