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Aucklander with Covid-19 was on Celebrity Solstice

Celebrity Solstice. Photo: Rosalie Liddle Crawford

One of the 11 new cases confirmed on Friday - an Auckland man in his 60s - travelled on the Celebrity Solstice around New Zealand. The cruise ship visited Tauranga on March 11.

He joined the cruise in Auckland on March 10 and disembarked in Dunedin - before he returned separately to Auckland.

The ship visited Tauranga - March 11, Picton - March 13, Akaroa - March 14, Port Chalmers -March 15, and left from Fiordland on March 16.

The Ministry of Health's public health staff will be working with their counterparts in Australia to give details of the activities of the passenger while on board the cruise to assist the Australian health services in the follow up they're undertaking there.

The ship arrived in Sydney on Friday and any New Zealanders on board returning to New Zealand will be regarded as close contacts, put in self-isolation and monitored daily.

Health officials say every person who was on that cruise who is now in New Zealand needs to self-isolate now.

As of midnight March 14 all cruise ships were banned from coming to New Zealand until at least 30 June 2020. Ships already in New Zealand waters were permitted to conclude their itinerary.

Ruby Princess

Coronavirus: 56 New Zealanders being contacted after Covid-19 cases on cruise ship

The Ministry of Health is contacting 56 New Zealanders who were on a cruise ship which had four people test positive for Covid-19.

The Ruby Princess, which left New Zealand seven days ago, and has had three Australian passengers and one crew member test positive for Covid-19.

The advice will be to be vigilant and contact their GP or Healthline if they display any Covid-19 symptoms.

The ministry is working with Customs and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade –MFAT - to check which New Zealanders on board have now returned to this country.

The Ruby Princess left Sydney on March 8, travelled to Fiordland (March 11), Dunedin (March 12), Akaroa (March 13), Wellington (March 14) and Napier (March 15).

The cruise, which was due to arrive in Tauranga on March 16 was shortened after visiting Napier, for weather reasons, and the ship returned directly to Sydney and passengers disembarked on March 18.

Any passengers who returned to New Zealand would be covered by the requirement for all travellers returning to New Zealand to go into self-isolation for 14 days. All returned passengers will be treated as close contacts and followed up with daily health checks, the Ministry of Health said.

The ship carried around 2700 passengers and 1100 crew.

The ministry is working through the itinerary of local visits undertaken by passengers to see if there are other precautionary steps that need to be taken.

Ministry staff will also be working with their counterparts in Australia to determine - from the four cases with Covid-19 - any other possible close contacts in New Zealand that will be contacted, put into self-isolation and tested if showing symptoms.

Passengers are not allowed to disembark the ship if they are unwell or showing signs of illness when it docks.

While in Wellington, there were a small number of passengers on board at the time with flu-like symptoms, and five passengers were tested in Wellington for Covid-19 on March 14. These people never left the ship in Wellington and the results from those tests were negative.

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