36 new cases of Covid-19 in NZ, taking infected total to 102

Covid-19 tests
Covid-19 tests ... 1100-1500 a day being carried out, with a new MoH team on the job. Image: RNZ/AFP

By RNZ News

New Zealand’s Ministry of Health (MoH) has revealed there are 36 new cases of Covid-19 in the country, taking the total to 102.

More than half are directly related to overseas travel, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said.

“So these are people who have returned to New Zealand recently and have become symptomatic, been tested and confirmed as cases of Covid-19,” he said.

“Most of the remaining cases are close contacts of a previously confirmed case or are associated with an event where there were confirmed cases already, for example, the Hereford Cattle conference in Queenstown.”

There were still two cases – in the Wairarapa and Auckland – that could not be linked to overseas travel and are being treated as community transmission.

More than 7400 tests have been carried out so far and there were 1100-1500 tests being done every day.

Contacting tracing efforts were being ramped up and the ministry was expecting more cases, Dr Bloomfield said.

‘We expected them’
“We have expected them because we have had people returning from a range of places around the world that have higher rates of Covid-19 and the important thing of course is that we find these cases, we isolate them, we identify close contacts and we isolate those people too.”

The Ministry of Health’s new team to contact trace can do 50 new cases a day and Dr Bloomfield said this was on top of the previous MoH team.

He said the alert levels were a government decision and the prime minister would be talking about the alert level within the hour.

This article is republished by the Pacific Media Centre under a partnership agreement with RNZ.

  • If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, call the NZ Covid-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 (+64 9 358 5453 for international SIMs)
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