Omicron cluster grows to 29; 25 new community cases

By Te Ao - Māori News

The Ministry of Health has confirmed 10 more Omicron cases as part of the 25 new community cases reported in total today. 

Of the 25 new cases, 18 are in Auckland, two each in Bay of Plenty and Lakes, and one each in Northland, MidCentral and Nelson-Marlborough regions.

Active cases are now at 470.

Omicron update

Of the new Omicron cases, one is in Nelson-Marlborough and is a household contact of a previously reported case. This case was already isolating when they tested positive. Another is in Palmerston North and is also a household contact of a previous case, and was also isolating when they tested positive. 

Two Omicron cases are in Tauranga. Both cases are in the same household and are isolating at home. Case investigations are continuing but, at this stage, there are a limited number of exposure events associated with these cases, the ministry says. 

The remaining six Omicron cases are in Auckland, all of which have been linked, directly or indirectly, to a family event and other associated events in Auckland on the weekend of January 15 and 16. 

More locations of interest have been updated, which people can find here.

The ministry says the Nelson-Marlborough family previously reported is believed to have become infected with Omicron while in Auckland, and not in the Nelson region, but investigations continue.

New case info

Northland's one new case is in Kaitaia and is linked to a previously reported case.

For the Lakes, both new cases are in Rotorua. Health officials are investigating recent travel to Auckland as the source of their infection with whole-genome sequencing underway to determine if it is of the Omicron variant. 

Health and welfare providers are now supporting 665 people in Auckland to isolate at home, including 164 cases.

Hospitalisations remain at 10 today. Five are in North Shore, two each in Auckland and Rotorua, and one in Middlemore hospitals. There is no one in an ICU or HDU.

Vaccine update

The highest number of booster doses in one day was recorded with 56,788 doses administered yesterday, bringing the total to 1,053,055.

Yesterday was a record for paediatric (child) doses administered of 14,400. Almost 95,000 5-to-11-year-olds have now received their first doses.

In total, 95% (3,997,561) of eligible New Zealanders have had their first dose and 93% (3,913,001) of New Zealanders are fully vaccinated. Yesterday 1,224 first doses, 1,861 second doses, 469 third primary doses, 14,400 paediatric doses, and 56,788 booster doses were administered.