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The Australian Defence Force (ADF) will deploy approximately 1,000 personnel to Victoria to help it contain the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
The deployment was announced following a request from the Victorian government after the recent resurfacing of Covid-19 cases.
Expected to be deployed in the following days, around 850 ADF members will monitor and extend support to hotel quarantining measures.
Nearly 200 personnel will provide logistical and medical support for public testing initiatives.
Under Operation COVID-19 ASSIST, the ADF is extending customised support to authorities, to reinforce and continue the fight against the pandemic.
The additional assistance deployed to the Victorian Government will supplement existing planning support to Emergency Management Victoria and the Department of Health and Human Services.
Till date, the ADF has successfully deployed approximately 2000 personnel as part of the operation.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said: “Defence has been providing support to Victoria since April and I’m pleased we’re able to rapidly increase our assistance to help Victoria respond to its current Covid-19 circumstances.
“The Covid-19 pandemic requires a proactive national response and Defence is well postured to provide scalable support to states and territories.”
Led by Major General Paul Kenny, Operation COVID-19 ASSIST aims to coordinate and deliver the military aspects of ADF’s support to civilian agencies.
Recently, the Government of Australia awarded eight new contracts worth A$21m ($14m) to boost its defence industry and develop new technologies.
Under the A$640m ($444m) defence innovation programme, industry partners and research organisations can submit innovation proposals through the Defence Innovation Portal.