page headers Coronavirus

Virus expected to peak in coming months

Chinas coronavirus death toll up to 563

Australia's coronavirus co-ordinator is preparing for infection rates among the community to peak in coming months.

Neville Power says once the virus peak eventually passes, his commission will turn its attentions to rebuilding the decimated national economy.

"But when exactly that is, I think it is very difficult to tell," he told Nine on Wednesday.

Mr Power said the organisation was keeping an open mind on how long the recovery would take.

In the meantime, more beds and staff will be available to care for Australians infected by COVID-19 after the federal government struck a deal with private hospitals.

The $1.3 billion deal with 657 private hospitals will provide an extra 34,000 beds and more than 100,000 staff.

Efforts are underway to double the number of ventilated intensive care beds to 4400, as part of an overall target of 7500.

At the same time, Australian manufacturers have intensified their efforts to shore up medical supplies including surgical masks and hand sanitiser.

The federal government's $130 billion JobKeeper package has attracted almost 300,000 business subsidy registrations in the first two days.

The package will provide businesses with a $1500 fortnightly wage subsidy to be distributed to each employee.

More than 4500 cases of coronavirus have so far been detected across Australia and 19 people have died.

Two customs officers - one from NSW and one from Queensland - are among those who have tested positive.

The daily infection rate has slowed to nine per cent over the past three days, down from a high of 25 to 30 per cent.

© AAP 2020