Victoria has reported a spike in Covid cases, with 2,297 new infections and 11 deaths reported, making it a new Australian record.
Thursday's figures have surpassed by 330 the last national record set on October 9, when the state recorded 1,965 cases.
Despite the grim figure, first Daniel Andrews said the state government is "delivering the roadmap" and will announce plans to start reopen as early as this weekend.
Andrews said he is committed to opening the state next week when the vaccination milestone double dose of 70% will be achieved, and that when this happensve, the number of daily cases would become "less relevant".
"Except and except for this point, the number of cases, especially among unvaccinated people, will result in a number of hospitalized patients, "he said.
He said the state was " literally within days "of the easing of restrictions.
" We have, basically, a very important deal with the Victorian community - you get your shot and we'll open up, and I'll do as I say. "
There 37,611 doses of vaccine were given on Thursday at state-run sites, as well as more doses in general medicine clinics and other places.
"This is why we are going to open up," said Andrews. "Because people have been vaccinated in record numbers in record time and they should be proud of it.and I'm proud of them and deeply grateful to them. "
There were concerns about whether the high number of cases will affect the 'State, but the numbers are still within the Burnet Institute modeled peak of between 1,400 and 2,900, which Victoria is expected to reach later this month.
Modeling predicted that the state would experience a seven-day average of 1,960 (or between 1,359 and 2,938 cases) on October 25.
Although the peak of cases arrived early, the hospitalization rate is still quite low, epidemiologists said.
Professor Catherine Bennett, president of Epidemiology at Deakin University in Victoria said the seven-day state average is currently 1,805.
"We are are approaching  but we are not there yet, "said Bennett." We have seen in NSW thatWhen it hits a plateau, you see several peaks. If you take the moving average, it's just another peak in this image.
She said the R0, or a reproductive number of the virus, was still sitting below one and the vaccination rate was keeping people from going. at the hospital.
"The Burnett predicted that our peak demand on hospitals would be 1,066 people, and our most recent hospital data shows that. 'there are 706, so we're a long way from that, "she said.
" We will always see more people in the hospital but nothing like the models still have predictions. "
There are currently 147 Victorians in intensive care, and Burnett modeling expected 700, with case numbers.
"We dodged the big ball in terms of hospitalization " said Bennett. "We canWe are therefore facing a higher number of cases than we thought because there is not the same flow to serious illness. "
11 reported deaths take the total number of lives lost in the latest outbreak in Victoria to 125 and the pandemic total to 945.
On the number of cases as of Thursday, nearly 46% were under 30 and 63% were under 40.
Deputy Prime Minister James Merlino said that the numbers "weren't what everyone wants " but still followed the state roadmap.
" This is a leap in numbers that we know will surprise many Victorians, "said Merlino.
" We were hoping to see a plateau in number, but today's jump is still within the projected range of the Burnet modeling. "
Among the hos90% were not vaccinated, he said.
Health officials said there was no event single peak number could be pinned to.
Andrews also indicated that there would be "considerable" limits on the freedoms of unvaccinated Victorians once that the state would open up.
"In terms of those who object to the first and second doses being given, those who do not want to be vaccinated and choose not to be vaccinated, there will be limits to their freedoms. "