Vic cases and hospitalisations stabilise
Victoria is rushing to get children vaccinated before school returns, as COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalisations continue to stabilise.
The state recorded 15 deaths and 13,755 new COVID-19 infections on Thursday, including 6130 from PCR tests and 7625 from rapid antigen tests.
Premier Daniel Andrews announced that from this weekend five- to 11-year-olds can walk up to receive a vaccine from some state-run hubs, to increase uptake before school's return on Monday.
The hubs include Sandown Racecourse, Dandenong Plaza, Caroline Springs Leisure Centre, Sunshine Hospital, Melton Vaccination Hub and Campbellfield Ford Complex.
Additionally, 15 primary schools will provide pop-up vaccination clinics this weekend, including in South Melbourne, Wyndham Vale, Lilydale and Fountain Gate.
Victoria is managing 119,153 total active cases, as hospitalisations with COVID-19 fall by 32 - with 1057 patients currently in hospital compared to 1089 on Wednesday.
There are 117 people in intensive care, an increase of four, with 40 of those on a ventilator.
Mr Andrews said case numbers and hospitalisations were trending down and the state's chief health officer had flagged the Omicron outbreak may have peaked.
"If we see these numbers continue, we continue to see hospitalisations falling, there's certainly stability there" he told reporters.
A code brown emergency is currently in place across the state's hospital system, due to the outbreak and the number of health workers unable to work.
Opposition leader Matthew Guy called for code brown to end and for the government to allow non-urgent surgeries to resume.
"Doctors are saying they are sitting at home, twiddling their thumbs, when they could be conducting surgeries," he told reporters.
Mr Andrews said healthcare worker furlough numbers were starting to come down.
He said the moment he is advised code brown can be removed "we will resume surgery and all other services as quickly as we can".
Ahead of a national cabinet meeting, the premier said he hopes a decision will be made to change the definition of fully vaccinated from two doses of a vaccine to three.
He wanted this to happen last week, but said cabinet was awaiting advice.
More than 35 per cent of over-18s have received their COVID-19 vaccine booster, after 16,979 doses were given at state-run hubs on Wednesday.
The premier said more than two million Victorians eligible for a third dose had not yet received one.
New data released by the health department on Wednesday revealed 53 per cent of people who have died from COVID-19 in the state were unvaccinated.
Only 1.7 per cent of deaths were in people who have received three doses of a vaccine.
Meanwhile, COVID-19 Response Deputy Secretary Naomi Bromley said 32 testing sites were closed on Wednesday due to hot weather.
A few sites were also disrupted on Thursday morning, after wild storms across Victoria.