November 18, 2021 | By Bronwen Largier

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has announced a major easing of COVID-19 restrictions will take place tonight at 11.59pm (Thursday, November 18), removing density limits and caps in hospitality settings and allowing events of up to 30,000 to proceed without Government approval.

Full vaccination will still be required in all of these settings. From midnight non-essential retail will also be restricted to only those who are vaccinated.

The state is expecting to hit 90 percent vaccination coverage in those aged 12 and over in the next few days.

From midnight, dancing in venues will be permitted again and masks will only be required in high risk settings like hospitals and care facilities, public transport, indoor retail and certain workplaces, like food processing.

Indoor and outdoor events of up to 30,000 will no longer require Government approval. Venues with capacity above 30,000 will need to get one-off approval for their COVIDSafe Plan.

Major events will now also be able to proceed at full capacity.

A major overhaul of isolation requirements and contact tracing was also announced, with close contacts of positive cases no longer required to isolate for an extended period, unless they are household contacts who have had more than four hours of contact with the positive case.

Full vaccinated household contacts will be required to isolate for seven days and be tested on entry and exit.

Those who have attended a venue where a positive case was present will need to get tested and isolate until they receive a negative result.

The Government will no longer be contact tracing social contacts of confirmed cases and exposure sites will no longer be published. Instead, the Department of Health will use the Service Victoria app to notify people when they have attended a higher-risk setting where a positive case was present.