The coronavirus death toll in Australia has risen to 19 as confirmed cases pass 4500.

Despite the rate of increase slowing, authorities have warned of "the real threat".

The death toll reached 19 after Tasmania announced its second victim.

Premier Peter Gutwein confirmed this morning a man in his 80s had died at Royal Hobart Hospital.


"This is a very sad time," he said. "This is two deaths too many in Tasmania, and it serves as a warning to us all that these are going to be tough and difficult times and we must all do our part to keep Tasmania safe."

It comes as the number of confirmed coronavirus cases passes 4500 after NSW reported another 114 new cases this morning, Victoria another 96 and Queensland another 55.

The trend is slowing in NSW but Victoria and Queensland's latest numbers are higher than yesterday.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said it was "too early" to say whether the curve was flattening. She said testing would be ramped up in areas like Waverley and Bondi where there had been localised breakouts.

The coronavirus pandemic has devastated the global economy. Photo / Getty Images
The coronavirus pandemic has devastated the global economy. Photo / Getty Images

"What is concern to all of us is that unknown level of community transmission that you might not pick up if people don't have symptoms," she said. "That's the real threat – people walking around without symptoms while they have this disease. That's why it is important to assume that they have it, and to act like they have it."

The total confirmed cases, based on a tally of numbers provided by each state and territory, stands at 4513.

As of Tuesday morning there were 2032 in NSW, 917 in Victoria, 743 in Queensland, 305 in South Australia, 355 in Western Australia, 69 in Tasmania, 80 in the Australian Capital Territory and 15 in the Northern Territory.

Nineteen people have now died – two in WA, two in Queensland, eight in NSW, four in Victoria, two in Tasmania and one in the ACT.


There are now 50 people in intensive care, with 20 of those on ventilators, Health Minister Greg Hunt said this afternoon.

Under new emergency powers signed last night, people in NSW who are out of their home without a "reasonable excuse" face fines of up to $11,000 and six months in jail.


Australia's first coronavirus fatality was on Sunday, March 1.

He was a 78-year-old Perth man who was among 163 Australians evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan and quarantined at Howard Springs in the Northern Territory.

The second death came on Tuesday, March 3. The 95-year-old woman was a resident at the Dorothy Henderson Lodge in Macquarie Park, in Sydney's north.


Two other residents of the same nursing home later died — an 82-year-old man on Sunday, March 8, followed by a 90-year-old woman on Saturday, March 14.

On Friday, March 13, a 77-year-old woman died in a Sydney hospital after recently arriving from Queensland. She had developed symptoms on the plane, was taken to hospital and died the same day.

An 86-year-old man died in a Sydney hospital on Tuesday, March 17, making him the state's fifth death and the country's sixth.

On Thursday, March 19, an 81-year-old woman died in hospital, bringing the death toll to seven. NSW Health said she had close contact with another confirmed case at Ryde Hospital.

The eighth death was a woman in her 70s who was rushed to hospital after disembarking the Ruby Princess cruise ship in Sydney on March 14. She died in hospital on Tuesday morning, March 24.

The ninth death was another Ruby Princess passenger. The 68-year-old Queensland man died in the afternoon on Wednesday, March 25, in intensive care at Toowoomba Hospital after returning from Sydney.

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Two men in their 70s died in hospital in Victoria that same night, marking the state's first deaths and the country's 10th and 11th. On Thursday, March 26, another Victorian man in his 70s died in hospital.

Later that day, another man in his 70s died in Joondalup Hospital in Perth after fainting in his home. He had also recently been on a cruise ship that had docked in Sydney, the Celebrity Solstice.

On Saturday, March 28, another Dorothy Henderson Lodge resident died in hospital, bringing the national death toll to 14.

The 15th and 16th deaths were announced moments apart on Sunday, March 28 – a 75-year-old female Ruby Princess passenger who died in Caboolture hospital, north of Brisbane, the previous night, and a man in his 80s who died at a Melbourne hospital.

On Monday, March 30, a woman in her 80s died at North-West Regional Hospital, making her Tasmania's first death and the country's 17th.


The national capital's first death came over the weekend, but was announced by ACT Health announced on Monday afternoon. The woman in her 80s died at Canberra Hospital after acquiring the disease overseas.

Tasmania reported its second death and the nation's 19th on Tuesday, March 31. Premier Peter Gutwein said the man in his 80s died at Royal Hobart Hospital.


The majority of Australia's coronavirus cases were acquired overseas.

Europe, the Americas and cruise ship travel are now the most common sources of infection, surpassing China.

People in their 20s make up the biggest proportion of confirmed Covid-19 cases due to the high number of returning travellers, with significantly more women than men testing positive in that age group.


Those in their 60s make up the second-largest group, followed by those in their 50s, 30s and 40s. Among those in their 40s, significantly more men than women have tested positive.

People in their 70s make up a smaller but still concerning number of total cases, while far fewer people aged over 80 or under 20 have been diagnosed.

The first case of Covid-19 was detected on January 25 in Victoria.

The patient was a man from Wuhan, Hubei province — where the Chinese virus emerged late last year — who flew to Melbourne from Guangdong on January 19.

Three more cases were detected the same day in NSW.

All three were men who had recently returned from China — two had been in Wuhan and one had direct contact with a confirmed case from the virus epicentre.


Since then, the number of cases has risen exponentially.

NSW quickly became ground zero for the Australian outbreak, and now makes up nearly half of all cases in the country.