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Victoria’s health system’s Code Brown to end, elective surgery restrictions to ease


The Code Brown in place across Victoria‘s health system is set to end on Monday, when restrictions on elective surgery across the state will also ease.
Victorian Health Minister Foley has announced the changes as Victoria’s daily COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalisation rates appear to have “plateaued”.

Victoria’s Code Brown, which has been active across the state’s hospital system since January 19, will come to an end on Monday, February 14, meaning hospitals will largely return to normal functioning.

Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley has announced an end to the Code Brown. (Nine)

He also announced elective surgery bans will ease from Monday, with private hospitals will be able to perform up to 50 per cent of all elective surgery in metropolitan Melbourne and up to 75 per cent of all elective surgery in regional areas.

Public hospitals in regional Victoria will be able to resume all category two elective surgery, dependent on workforce availability.

The Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and the Royal Eye and Ear Hospital will be able to resume all category two procedures.

Some elective surgery resumes in private hospitals in Victoria this week. (Nine)

All other public hospitals in Melbourne will continue to be restricted to emergency and urgent elective surgery.

Mr Foley said the changes to the health system were able to occur because Victoria was now seeing a “plauteauing” of case numbers, hospitalisation rates and cases of acute illness.

“Sadly we are still seeing deaths continue to rise,” he said.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 21: A COVID-19 testing clinic sign at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital on January 21, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. NSW has recorded 46 deaths from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, marking the deadliest day in the state since the start of the pandemic. NSW also recorded 25,168 new coronavirus infections in the last 24 hour reporting period. (Photo by Jenny Evans/Getty Images)

Your COVID-19 questions answered

Mr Foley said the government would further lift restrictions on elective surgery in the state as soon as it was possible.

To further get health care professionals back to their usual roles, Mr Foley announced 1000 ‘vaccinaters’ had been trained up to deliver COVID-19 vaccines across the state.

He said the new vaccination staff would allow nurses and other health professionals who have been administering vaccines to return back to public health services.

Mr Foley has reassured the vaccination staff will be supervised by nurses and other professionals.

Victoria has recorded 8521 new cases of COVID-19 overnight and a further 13 deaths.

There are 553 people in hospital with the virus across the state, including 82 in intensive care and 23 on ventilators.



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