Covid-19: Six new cases in NZ today
There are six new confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand today and three people are in intensive care units.
Four of the six new cases are epidemiologically linked to the existing cluster in Auckland – two are household contacts and two are church contacts. The other two cases reported today remain under investigation.
There are now 111 active cases in New Zealand. Sixteen of the active cases are imported cases from managed isolation facilities.
Seventy NZ Post office workers are isolating after staffers tested positive.
There are now 92 actives cases in the Auckland August cluster. The majority of cases are aged between 50 and 59, and between 30 and 39.
There are 145 people linked to the Auckland cluster who are all in managed Auckland quarantine facilities. This includes 75 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their household contacts.
Of the 2060 close contacts identified, 2004 have been contacted and are self-isolating. The Ministry of Health is in the process of contacting the rest.
For the period August 13-19 84 per cent of close contacts were contacted and isolated within 48 hours of the case being notified to the local PHU.
The six new cases reported today bring NZ’s total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 to 1,321, which is the number that is reported to the World Health Organization.
There are nine people with COVID-19 in hospital - two in Auckland City Hospital, four people in Middlemore, two people in North Shore Hospital and one person in Waikato Hospital. Six people are stable on a ward, and three people in Middlemore are in ICU.
All of the cases who are in hospital are isolated and carefully managed separately from other patients. The public can be confident that our DHBs are managing this effectively, as they did in the first outbreak of COVID-19 in New Zealand. We have heard reports of people who are reluctant to get an ambulance or go to hospital – hospitals continue to be safe places to receive medical care, and people should feel confident going to hospital to receive treatment.
Laboratories processed 12,256 tests for COVID-19 yesterday, bringing the total number of tests completed to date to 685,476.
Cabinet will be reviewing restrictions in Auckland and around the country on Monday.
Level 3 in Auckland and Level 2 nationwide remain in place until August 26. A move to Level 4 has been ruled out.
NZ COVID Tracer app update:
There are now 1,712,000 users registered with NZ COVID Tracer – that is 42 per cent of the population aged 15 and over.
There are now 309,218 QR code posters – and the self-service portal is still the fastest and easiest way for people to get their QR codes.
Turnaround for manual QR code requests is currently around 24 hours. This is for manual requests where people cannot use the self-service portal.
There have been 12,918,793 poster scans to date, and 1,441,268 manual entries into the app.
Anyone having problems getting started with the app should get in touch with the support team either by email or phone 0800 800 606. The team is dealing with a high volume of queries, so please be patient if you don’t get an immediate response.
Under the current Alert Level 3 restrictions there are strict criteria around who can enter and leave Auckland.
The Ministry has received more than 10,000 applications for exemptions. These applications are being assigned to teams for processing as soon as they come in – to date the team has approved more than 1,400 applications and declined around 300.
Urgent exemptions, for example, to visit a dying relative, are prioritised and dealt with promptly. People are encouraged to check the information on the website to see whether they need to apply.
To make the application process easier, the team is working on creating a form that will be on the website soon.
If you are sick, call your GP before you visit, or call Healthline on 0800 358 5453.
To avoid contracting and spreading the virus, wash your hands properly, cough and sneeze into the crook of your elbow and throw tissues away immediately.