Two new coronavirus cases in New Zealand – one further death

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Dr Ashley Bloomfield
NZ's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield ... student unlikely to be infectious, but would remain in isolation and be re-tested in a week's time. Image: RNZ screenshot/PMC

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said there was one new confirmed and one probable case.

The confirmed case was related to the Marist College cluster in Auckland, while the probable case has been linked to the St Margaret’s rest home cluster.

READ MORE: Al Jazeera coronavirus live updates – US death toll surges to more than 70,000

Dr Bloomfield said about 250 people linked to the Marist cluster had been tested so far and this case was the only one.

“The student has what we call a ‘weak positive test’ and is almost certainly late in the course of the infection.”

He said this meant it was unlikely to be infectious, but the student would remain in isolation and be re-tested in a week’s time.

Dr Bloomfield also said there had been one further death from the Rosewood rest home cluster – a woman in her 60s who had been recorded as a probable case and had underlying health conditions.

“This woman has been at Rosewood since 2011 and was a much-loved member of the Rosewood family, and a staff member was comforting her when she passed away.”

Today’s media briefing. Video: RNZ News

There were 4772 tests processed yesterday, bringing the total to 160,700 tests. There are no new clusters and three have been closed.

Dr Bloomfield said the continuing low numbers continued to be encouraging.

“But we are by no means out of the woods, we need everyone to stick to the plan and continue to follow the rules around alert level 3,” he said.

“And not doing so does risk undoing all the good work we have achieved so far, we have seen how quickly this virus can spread, so do not give it an inch.”

Covid-19 daily update on 6 May, 2020.
Graphic: RNZ News

Dr Bloomfield said the continuing low numbers continued to be encouraging.

“But we are by no means out of the woods, we need everyone to stick to the plan and continue to follow the rules around alert level 3.

“And not doing so does risk undoing all the good work we have achieved so far, we have seen how quickly this virus can spread, so do not give it an inch.”

‘It signals that NZ is open for business’
Speaking at the same media conference, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the news that Microsoft would make an investment in New Zealand to establish a data centre for its cloud services was welcomed news.

“International companies like Microsoft wouldn’t be investing here … if they didn’t have full confidence in the NZ economy.”

She said it was subject to normal regulatory processes.

“It signals to the world that New Zealand is open for business.”

She said by tackling the virus early, New Zealand was well-positioned to rebuild our economy.

Ardern said that while latest figures showed promising employment figures with the unemployment rate rising slightly from 4 percent to 4.2 percent, it did not take into account the worst of the lockdown.

“Obviously, a huge amount has changed in the last six weeks in New Zealand, and this global 1-in-100-year health and economic crisis will contribute to unemployment rising, of that there is no doubt.

“But we will continue to support people, to help protect jobs, to help grow jobs and help support peoples’ incomes.”

  • 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) or call your GP – don’t show up at a medical centre.
  • Follow RNZ’s coronavirus newsfeed
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