PM announces Covid alert level change from midnight

By Te Ao - Māori News

Prime Mininster Jacinda Ardern has today confirmed Auckland will move to Alert Level 2 at midnight tonight and the rest of Aotearoa to Alert Level 1.

Three community cases of Covid-19 have now been confirmed in relation to the outbreak in Papatoetoe on Sunday. One more case in Managed Isolation was confirmed earlier today.

The Prime Minister wants to remind the public that Alert Level 2 means the virus is contained but there is still a risk of community transmission.

"I want to stress to everyone that this is good news," says Ardern.

"A part from the cases that have emerged today, all results of close and casual contacts of the initial three cases have come back negative.

"What this tells us is that we don't have a widespread outbreak but rather a small chain of transmission which is manageable via our normal contact and tracing testing procedures." 

Alert levels will remain in-place until Monday. The government will assess the situation to determined whether our alert status is to change.

Locations of Interest

Health director-general Dr Ashley Bloomfield says locations of interest of possible contamination from the outbreak have been identified.

"Scoping of any further additional locations of interest is underway," he says.

"I recognise that these additional cases may cause concern for the school community and indeed across the wider community.

"But it is reassuring that they are all linked and were identified through the testing that was put in place specifically for this purpose."

Dr Bloomfield thanks Papatoetoe High School and the local community for the efforts made to identify the extent of the virus outbreak.

"Their prompt actions willingness to be tested has meant that our system has been able to kick in and make sure, as it should have, in identifying these cases.

For more information on the places of interest of possible contamination, click here.

And for information on testing and keeping safe, please go to covid19.govt.nz