‘Coronavirus is so real ’- bereaved family issues plea to Kiwis

By Jessica Tyson

The family of two brothers who died after contracting Covid-19 have issued a plea to New Zealanders to be vigilant and cautious.

Nigel Huirama Te Hiko, 54, died last night and his brother Alan, 58, died earlier this month after battling the virus in intensive care.

Health director-general Dr Ashley Bloomfield said during a press conference today the whānau asked him to tell the country that “coronavirus is so real”, to be very vigilant and cautious, and if people are sick and have symptoms, they stay home.

Dr Bloomfield says today’s death again emphasises the seriousness of the virus and the consequences it can have.

“Our thoughts are with this man’s family and friends during this difficult time as they mourn the loss of their loved one.”

There have now been 25 Covid-19 related deaths in New Zealand.

Update on cases

One new case of Covid-19 was reported today in a New Zealand managed isolation facility, with and no new community cases.

"Today’s new case is a woman in her 30s, who arrived from Dubai on September 9. This case is related to the three cases reported yesterday," says Dr Bloomfield says.

There are three people in hospital with the virus,  one at Auckland City Hospital and two others in ICU in North Shore Hospital and Middlemore.

Some 57 people linked to the community cluster remain in the Auckland quarantine hotel including 27 people who have tested positive and their household contacts.

With today’s new case and four additional recovered cases, the number of active cases is 79 including 27 imported and 52 are community cases.