45 new Covid cases in Tāmaki Makaurau

By Te Ao - Māori News

A big surge in case numbers sees 45 new Covid-19 cases, all in Auckland, but Health director-general Dr Ashley Bloomfield says it is to be expected.

It brings the total number of cases to 1230. 969 people have recovered.

Four of yesterday's eight cases were in the community while infectious, while the other four were isolating during their infectious period.

Information on the 45 cases

"33 of these new cases are known to be household or other close contacts of existing cases, and many have been isolating throughout their infectious period either at home or in a MIQ facility.

"Of these, 26 are household contacts and twelve come from just two households where there are six in each."

Separately, Dr Rawiri Taonui provided information that 23 cases are Māori and 20 cases are Pasifika.

Bloomfield says many of the cases were to be expected. 

"On Monday, I indicated that there were between 45 and 50 cases at that time, likely to arise among household or other close contacts who had already been identified.  We're seeing of those come through in the number today."

There are 12 cases that are unlinked with interviews underway. "But what I would say is for six of those there are already potential links visible," Bloomfield says.

Bloomfield says some of the cases today may have been working in essential or permitted businesses. These are part of those that haven't been or are in the process of being interviewed.

Bloomfield also encouraged businesses to "actively support any of your staff who are not vaccinated to get vaccinated today.

"While the overall number today is obviously a lot higher, it's important to note that many of these cases are linked to our existing cases and, in some sense, they were expected.

"But even more important is that we found these cases because people have come forward and been tested. This is essential for us to know what we are dealing with, and high levels of testing across Auckland tell us that."

There are 16 people in hospital. Two are in North Shore Hospital, seven in Middlemore and seven in Auckland Hospital. Three people ar ein ICU.

There are four new recoveries to report and a case from yesterday has now been reclassified as under investigation. Therefore the total case count has increased by 44 today.

Wastewater update in Tauranga 

The Bay of Plenty DHB has seen an increase in testing numbers with around 400 people tested so far, following yesterday's new of a sample detected in wastewater in Tauranga.

But Bloomfield says he would like to see more. 

There are extended hours for testing in Tauranga today, and Bloomfield encourages anyone with symptoms or has been at a location of interest to get tested, and also for people in the region to get vaccinated if they haven't done so yet.