Victoria’s latest COVID-19 rules, restrictions, and testing guidelines

woman washing hands

RACV Staff

Posted August 09, 2022


 

For the next four to six weeks, free N95 and KN95 masks will be handed out at PCR COVID-19 test sites, community health service venues and on public transport. 

This includes community locations, disability service venues, and at Indigenous gatherings. Any individual who goes to a COVID-19 testing site will receive a free box of 10 masks. 

The restrictions on the number of visitors in hospitals has been removed, although masks requirements in hospitals remain.

While masks are no longer required in retail, hospitality, and school settings, they are still recommended indoors.

It is advised for people to take steps to COVID-19 prevention, including vaccination, face masks indoors, regular testing, getting medicine if at risk, and staying home if feeling unwell.

Close contacts of positive COVID-19 people no longer need to isolate for seven days, but must wear a mask indoors in public settings and record at least five negative Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) over the course of seven days. 

Those aged 30 and above are eligible for a fourth vaccination booster.

For definitions on contacts and current restrictions, rules and requirements for COVID-19 in Victoria, see below. 

The following guidelines are presented in the Victorian Government's roadmap, as outlined on coronavirus.vic.gov.au

In this article:

COVID-19 testing and isolation guidelines for Victoria 

Victoria COVID-19 testing and isolation guidelines

Victoria COVID-19 testing and isolation guidelines

Testing advice

Isolation period

I don't have COVID-19 symptoms

No action required unless travelling or certain medical procedures, see state or country guidelines for details.

None

I have COVID-19 symptoms 

RAT test. PCR only if you are unable to access a RAT or have been instructed.

Rest and recover at home if possible, test regularly. Seek medical attention if symptoms worsen.

I have been diagnosed with COVID-19

Diagnosis can come from either positive PCR or RAT.

Isolate for seven days. Notifiy education provider and/or workplace. Can leave isolation to drive a household member to or from work or education as long as they don't leave their vehicle. Isolation period ends after seven days if symptoms dissipate.

I'm a household contact – no symptoms

You don't have to quarantine during the seven day monitoring period. Continually test negative using a rapid antigen test, on at least five days.

I'm a household contact – have symptoms

You don't have to quarantine during the seven day monitoring period. Continually test negative using a rapid antigen test, on at least five days.

Isolate until negative test result, test daily if symptoms persist.

Other or casual contact – social, workplace etc. 

Monitor for symptoms, RAT advised.

Current restrictions in Victoria

Masks

Masks are required for the following settings: 

  • Public transport, planes, taxis, cruise embarkment, and rideshare. Masks no longer required at airports 
  • Hospitals, aged care, and indoor areas at care facilities
  • Those with COVID-19

Masks are still recommended for those aged eight and up when leaving home when social distancing is not possible. 

Elective surgery

Surgeries have resumed at public and private hospitals, based on capacity, staff availability and the COVID-19 demands of the location.  

Vaccines

Some workplaces and individual venues may require vaccination for entry. 

Workers in industries such as aged and disability care, healthcare, and emergency services require a third or fourth dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to be considered ‘up to date.’

Travel

International and domestic travellers entering Victoria no longer need to submit a negative pre-departure COVID-19 test, although it is strongly recommended. 

For travel, the Digital Passenger Declaration form is no longer required, meaning all visa holders can fly into Australia regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status. 

Domestic and international travellers coming into Victoria no longer need to declare their COVID-19 vaccination status.

Air

Coming into Victoria: Travellers coming into Victoria no longer need to be vaccinated. It is recommended to complete a PCR or RAT with 24 hours of arriving into Australia. Travellers do not need to quarantine while waiting for a result. 

If symptoms arise with seven days, the person must have a PCR or RAT and self-quarantine until they receive a result. 

Cruises

Coming into Victoria: Travellers coming into Victoria on a cruise ship must show proof of a negative PCR test (within 72 hours of departing for Australia) or a RAT (within 24 hours of departure to Australia). 

Passengers aged 12 years and three months must be double vaccinated (or have a medical exemption), while crew must be triple vaccinated. 

A negative test is required before boarding, and masks must be worn when embarking and disembarking from the ship, and in indoors areas where you can't physically distance (except for in cabins).  

Unvaacinated passengers must not make up more than five per cent of the ship's passengers. 

If you contract COVID-19 while on board or a deemed a close contact (such as sharing a room with a COVID-19 positive person) you must isolate for seven days.

Leaving Victoria

Travellers need to assess the  rules and conditions of the airlines, states and countries they are travelling to.

Set rules apply for those working in aviation and crew, including wearing masks and being up to date with vaccinations. 

Gatherings

There are no limits to the number of people gathering indoors or outdoors (including the home).

Retail, entertainment, events and hospitality

Retail venues, cinemas, dance floors and theatres can operate at maximum capacity subject to COVIDSafe requirements. 

Workplace

Rules requiring general workers to work from home unless they are double vaccinated are lifted, although workplaces can set their own conditions.

 


Definition of contacts

Close contacts

If you have been in close proximity to someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in a home setting for more than four hours or live with the person, you do not need to isolate. However, you must use a Rapid Antigen Test and record at least five negative results over the seven day period, wear a mask at home, notify your employer/educational provider, and refrain from visiting hospitals or care facilities.

If you receive a positive result on a RAT or PCR, you must isolate for seven days.

Social and workplace contacts

If you spend more than 15 minutes with a person who tests positive to COVID-19, it is advised that you use a RAT for a five day period. 

If you have symptoms, isolate until you receive a negative resport. If you test positive, you must report your result and isolate for the mandatory seven day isolation period. 

Education and chilcare setting contacts 

Staff and students in educational settings are encourgaed to take regular RATs. 

An education provider should notify students, parents or guardians if there was exposure to COVID-19 at the facility. 

If you have symptoms, isolate until you receive a negative resport. If you test positive, you must report your result and isolate for the mandatory seven day isolation period. 

When you are not a close contact

Those who have isolated with COVID-19 in the four weeks previous to exposure with a a COVID-19 positive person are not considered a close contact in their recent recovery period. 

 

 


Victoria's current COVID-19 restrictions

The following guidelines are presented in the Victorian Government's roadmap, as outlined on coronavirus.vic.gov.au.

Victoria's COVID-19 roadmap

Victoria's COVID-19 roadmap

Rules from 29 July 2022

Leaving home

No restrictions

Masks

Masks are required for:

 

- Public transport, planes, cruise embarkment, taxis and rideshare

 

-  Hospitals, aged care, and indoor areas at care facilities

 

- Those with COVID-19 

 

-Those over the age of eight are recommended to wear a mask when leaving the home in indoor settings

Travel

No restrictions on intrastate or interstate travel

 

Check COVID restrictions for your destination

Private gatherings

No limit

Public gatherings

No limit

Hospitality

Proof of vaccination no longer required

Weddings

No limit

Funerals

No limit

Schools, Childcare and Higher Education

Schools and childcare are open to all ages

 

Third-dose vaccine mandates lifted for staff but workplaces can set individual policies

Workplace

Some restrictions apply depending on the workplace and industry

 

A COVIDSafe Plan must be available on site

Retail

Masks recommended in indoor settings but not required

Beauty therapy

Masks recommended in indoor settings but not required

Religious gatherings

If held at or by an organisation or workplace, requires a COVIDSafe plan

Sport & Outdoor

If held at or by an organisation or workplace, requires a COVIDSafe plan

Entertainment

If held at or by an organisation or workplace, requires a COVIDSafe plan

Hospitals & care facilities

Hospitals - Advised to take a RAT before visiting

Hospitals may apply their own COVIDSafe settings based on local needs

Mask requirements remain

Aged care - Visitors must provide a negative COVID-19 result through a PCR or RAT, and wear a mask at all times

Real estate

No limit