Victoria has reported 1,438 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases, a huge jump from 950 the day before, and five deaths.
The new case numbers is another daily record for the state, brings the total number of active cases in the state to 11,018 and the death toll of the current outbreak to 41.
There were 65,497 tests processed and 34,323 vaccine doses administered at state hubs on Wednesday.
With lockdown continuing until vaccination milestones are reached, the state and federal governments are extending a jointly funded business grants package for six more weeks.
Up to $2.27 billion for small to medium-sized businesses was announced on Thursday for those most affected by restrictions as Victoria reaches the 70 per cent, then 80 per cent fully vaccinated thresholds, forecast for about 26 October and 5 November respectively.
More than 160,000 businesses will be eligible for the support, ranging from retailers and gyms to hairdressers and hotels – mostly through automatic deposits into their bank accounts.
Also from Thursday, Victorian residents in extreme risk zones such as Greater Sydney can apply for a permit if they are fully vaccinated, test negative within 72 hours of departure and isolate at home for 14 days.
Those who have been to an exposure site, are close contacts of a COVID-19 case or with symptoms will be knocked back, while non-Victorians are not eligible.