Covid-19 coronavirus: No new community cases, seven in managed isolation

There are no new community cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand today, but seven in managed isolation.

The Ministry of Health says there are now 93 active cases in the country.

One of the infected travellers is in Hamilton, while the rest are in Auckland’s Jet Park quarantine facility.

One came from the Netherlands, two came from India and one from Pakistan. The departure countries of three other infected people are not listed.

Of those who are now being treated all were detected on day zero or one, except an arrival from the Netherlands who was symptomatic on day 2.

That person is currently in managed isolation in Hamilton.

The travellers arrived in the country between March 11-13.

The health ministry said laboratories had now processed 1,821,426 tests to date.

But yesterday saw a marked drop-off with just 2440 tests processed.

The ministry said 47,000 more users had signed up to the Covid tracer app in the past fortnight.

With large crowds assembling in Auckland for America’s Cup racing there had been 1,107,949 scans in the last 24 hours.

“It’s great to see ongoing good use of the NZ Covid Tracer app and it’s vitally important that Kiwis continue to do so. Please scan QR codes wherever you go and turn on Bluetooth tracing in the app dashboard if you haven’t already done so,” said the ministry.

Before today’s update there were 87 active Covid-19 cases, with none in the community.

One person remains in hospital being treated for the virus.

Another is reported as having their location unknown with health authorities confirming that person is an international mariner who tested positive in New Zealand but on a vessel that had since departed our shores.

According to a Health Ministry spokesperson, the infected seaman has no plans to return to New Zealand.

With the country now reunited at alert level 1 and all community cases recovered from the February Valentine’s Day cluster, health authorities are continuing to urge people to keep using the contact tracer app saying it’s “vitally important that Kiwis continue to do so”.

The Health Ministry said it was important to remain vigilant and stick to the basics: staying home if unwell and getting advice about having a test, washing hands, coughing and sneezing into the elbow, and wearing masks or face coverings on all public transport and keeping track of where you’ve been.

The Auckland flight attendant at the centre of this month’s border-related aircrew case remains at Jet Park quarantine facility after testing positive just over a week ago with aRussian Covid strain.

Fourteen cabin crew have so far tested negative along with household contacts.

Health authorities said the infected case had a limited number of contacts and therefore the wider public health risk was considered low.

Yesterday there was just one new case detected at the border.

A person who arrived from France on March 9 tested positive on day three of routine tests.

They are now in quarantine at Auckland’s Jet Park quarantine facility.

Meanwhile authorities in two Australian states are scrambling to contain fresh outbreaks in the community.

In Queensland, hundreds of people have been contacted as a quarantine hotel went into lockdown after two residents tested positive with investigations under way to see if there was any transmission.

Both cases were already known and recorded by Queensland Health but it was only discovered on Sunday that one of them could have “potentially” caught it from the other while in hotel quarantine.

They were both staying at the Hotel Grand Chancellor in Brisbane, which will go into a 72-hour lockdown while authorities investigate if Covid-19 spread between them while they were staying at the hotel rather than them both separately catching it overseas and bringing it in.

One of the cases was a patient at Brisbane’s Princess Alexandria Hospital, who was treated by a doctor who later tested positive to Covid-19.

Contact tracing of more than 200 of the doctor’s community contacts from four venues she visited on Thursday is under way. There were 61 staff and seven patients at the hospital who were identified as potential close contacts of the doctor who tested positive.

Urgent contact tracing is under way in New South Wales after NSW Health revealed the state’s first positive case in 55 days was confirmed as a 47-year-old man who works as a security guard at two Covid-19 hotels for returned travellers.

As a result of the scare, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia have issued travel alerts in response to the new coronavirus case.


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