A new website listing hot spots for coronavirus across Victoria has listed a Bendigo shopping centre as a "high-risk location" over two days earlier this month.
People who visited the Marketplace over these two days are urged to monitor themselves for symptoms of coronavirus, and to get tested immediately if symptoms do occur.
The shopping centre is one of several sites across Victoria to be named on the new page.
Victorians will be able to look at coronavirus hotspots and high-risk locations with the state government to release more detailed data on COVID-19 cases.
The state government will launch a data dashboard on the Department of Health and Human Services website.
Health minister Jenny Mikakos said the new dashboard would be critically important for people as restrictions were potentially lifted in the coming weeks.
"Everything we have done is driven by data and advice of public health experts," she said.
"That has meant sharing data with the community, whether by daily briefings, CHO media release, DHHS website.
"We want to continue to share more data and, from today, a new dashboard on the DHHS website makes more information available to Victorians for the first time.
"This will include not only active case numbers and number of deaths, it will have details around outbreaks, it'll have details around aged care setting outbreaks, hospitalisations, but also it will list high-risk locations for the first time"
Ms Mikakos said people would be able to assess the information and risks in going into the community for themselves.
"It's important we arm the community with this information," she said.
"People will be able to search and see if a known case has been to the local shopping centre, a local cafe, a workplace or another location.
"This is just the start, we are going to be working very closely with local councils, with health services, with community organisations to make this information available on the website."
#Covid19VicData for August 24, 2020.— VicGovDHHS (@VicGovDHHS) August 23, 2020
There have been 116 new cases of #coronavirus (#COVID19) detected in Victoria in the last 24 hours, and sadly 15 deaths.
Our thoughts are with everyone during this difficult time.
More information will be available later today. pic.twitter.com/mLWLHArduY
Ms Mikakos said knowing community hot spots and high-risk locations did not mean people could not still be infected with coronavirus.
"We know this is a highly contagious virus, it's very easy for people to pick up this virus," she said.
Bendigo mayor Margaret O'Rourke had been calling on the state government to release more detailed data, particularly in regional local government areas.
She said this morning's announcement was a step in the right direction.
"It will help people make informed decisions," Cr O'Rourke said.
The mayor said the additional data would be another tool to help Victorians live with the virus until a vaccine was developed.
She warned people against becoming complacent.
"You can have good data, [but] that's not going to help you unless you have all the other right elements," Cr O'Rourke said.
She urged people to keep adhering to COVID-19 restrictions and being vigilant with mask wearing, social distancing, hand washing, and limiting movement throughout the community.
Daniel Andrews hopes to extend state of emergency
Other major news from the state government's daily press briefing saw Victorian premier Daniel Andrews announce that he will present a bill to parliament to be able to potentially extend the state of emergency by 12 months.
Currently, a state of emergency can only be declared for a maximum six months. Victoria's state of emergency is due to end on September 13.
Mr Andrews said the proposed changes were important because the pandemic would not end on September 13.
"(The state of emergency) is the legal instrument allows rules about things like face masks, density limits and a positive person being required to isolate," he said. "We can't have rules and framework end on September 13 because the virus wont be end on September 13."
"We (plan to) extend state of emergency provision in Public Health and Wellbeing Act for further 12 months if necessary. We will engage with parties in Victorian parliament soon to talk about changes and hopefully have an agreement."
Mr Andrews said the availability on a vaccine would affect when the state of emergency may lift.
"It could be less of 12 months but we have to assume the vaccine won't be here and there some rules... (that are) a product of the state of emergency.
"(These) are provisions we need to be change to reflect that while would love to have this (pandemic) over, it's not going to be the case (soon)."
Active cases in regional Victoria drop
In the past 24 hours, Victoria has seen 116 new cases bringing the state's total number of cases to 18,330.
Mr Andrews said regional Victoria currently has 232 active cases with 24 in Greater Bendigo.
"In regional Victoria, active cases continue to fall," he said. "That is the direct product of localised public health teams, the good work of regional Victorians and people coming forward to get tested in cities like Geelong, Bendigo and Ballarat.
"I'm grateful to regional Victorians for coming forward to get tested. We are in a much improved position to where we were 10 days ago for regional cities but we shouldn't get the idea that this is done."
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