Another climb sees 55 new Covid cases today

By Te Ao - Māori News

Health director-general Dr Ashley Bloomfield reports 55 new cases; two in Waikato and the rest in Auckland.

This takes the total in the current outbreak to 1,719.

Some 1,172 of Auckland's 1,665 cases have recovered and one of Waikato's 37 cases has recovered.

So far 29 cases have been linked to the current outbreak and 26 are yet to be linked, with investigations underway.

The two new community cases in Waikato today are members of the same household in Hamilton. They are being transferred today to a local quarantine facility.

These cases are unlinked but interviews will be carried out today to help determine any links to known cases. Two workplace exposure events have been identified but Hamilton residents are encouraged to keep checking the ministry’s website for any locations of interest.

An Auckland-based truck driver who travelled to Northland for work purposes on October 9 has tested positive for Covid-19. The case is currently being assessed to identify risk and any exposure events.  

While the case investigation is still in the early stages initial information suggests a limited scope of exposure in Northland, given Alert Level 3 precautions within the delivery sector.  

Advice will be provided to businesses involved but, at this stage, there is no evidence of significant risk to the region from this case. Any locations of interest will be listed on the Ministry of Health website.

Alert level updates.

Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says the parts of the Waikato and Northland that are in alert level 3 will remain there until 11:59pm next Monday, October 15.

"The Waikato has done a phenomenal job over the last few weeks of getting tested and getting vaccinated."

Hipkins thanked the region's people for getting vaccinated to keep themselves, their whānau and their communities safe. 

"In Northland, there have been 19,691 vaccinations in the past seven days. That's more than double the number of vaccinations in the previous week.

"We really want to see that momentum continue. 

"We still don't have confidence that we've got a full enough picture of the situation."

That's due to getting the info from two Northland cases that are now in quarantine in Auckland, about where they have been travelling to has been slow-going."

"The best thing that people in Northland can do right now is to get tested if they have any symptoms."

North Shore Hospital update

Following a previously reported exposure event at the dialysis unit at North Shore Hospital, two patients and two staff members have tested positive for Covid-19.  
 
Staff are also undergoing rapid antigen testing before the start of each shift, with all results this morning again negative.

Some staff in the unit are considered close contacts and have been stood down as a precaution.  

All appropriate steps are being taken to manage potential risk while Although dialysis services to this group of renal patients have continued, extra precautions have been taken to avoid Covid.

All patients are being screened on arrival at the unit. Full PPE precautions are being taken within the unit, which is being intensively cleaned between each group of patients.

Vaccination updates

Vaccination rates in Waikato remained high yesterday with 7,434 people getting a dose. There were 2,980 tests processed in Waikato yesterday.

In Northland, 3,905 doses of COVID-19 vaccine were given yesterday - 1,1385 first doses and 2,520 second doses. To date, there have been 113,067 first doses and 82,692 second doses of the vaccine administered in Northland.

Among Māori, 353,840 first doses have been administered and 224,718 are now fully vaccinated.

Throughout Aotearoa 3,840,716 doses have been administered and 2,494,557 people are fully vaccinated.