Two new community cases; sub-cluster church leaders encouraging congregation to get retested, self-isolate

By Te Ao - Māori News

There are two new community cases of Covid-19 to report in New Zealand today, the Ministry of Health said in a written update Saturday afternoon.

Both new cases have an epidemiological link to an existing case and they are both associated with the bereavement events sub-cluster that is epidemiologically linked to the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship group.

One of the cases is a student at Sunnyvale School in Henderson. They were not infectious when they last attended school and Auckland Regional Public Health Service has not identified any close contacts among the school community. The school remains open and safe for students and staff to attend, the ministry says.

There remain 33 cases in the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship group and there are now 15 cases in the bereavement events group, which includes the cases whose source of infection was the bereavement events.

The ministry says leaders of the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship have actively encouraged all members of the congregation to get retested for Covid-19 and comply with other public health advice such as self-isolation.

As a result of this, at 8am Saturday morning laboratories had registered new tests for 98 per cent of the congregation, the ministry says.

There are now 63 people linked to the community cluster who remain in the Auckland quarantine facility, which includes 47 people who have tested positive for Covid-19 and their household contacts.

Since 11 August, the ministry's contact tracing team has identified 3,647 close contacts of cases, of which 3,640 have been contacted and are self-isolating. The ministry says it is in the process of contacting the rest.

There are three people in hospital with Covid-19 – one is in isolation on a ward in Auckland City Hospital. Two are in ICU, at North Shore and Waikato hospitals.

With today’s two new cases and eight additional recovered cases, the total number of active cases is 108. Of those, 38 are imported cases in MIQ facilities and 70 are community cases.

Yesterday, laboratories processed 8,838 tests bringing the total number of tests completed to date to 857,258.