INDEPENDENT NEWS

Covid-19 outbreak linked to Australian case taken to Middlemore Hospital

Published: Thu 19 Aug 2021 01:33 PM
The current cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand have been linked to an Australian case who was taken to Middlemore Hospital earlier this week.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield are providing a Covid-19 update on day two of the nationwide lockdown.
Ardern said the current positive cases have been linked via genome sequencing to a traveller who arrived from NSW on a managed red zone flight. That person returned a positive day one test on 9 August and was transferred to Middlemore Hospital on 16 August.
She said the period in which cases were in the community was relatively short, but new information could change this conclusion.
Ardern said primary lines of investigation are staff at the Crown Plaza, staff at the Jet Park facility and staff involved in their arrival and transport. Middlemore Hospital is not part of the investigation.
Customs are investigating footage and identifying areas of interest and testing staff.
"Nothing has eventuated from this line of inquiry to date."
Staff at Jet Park and Crown Plaza are being retested.
Earlier today, Dr Bloomfield said health officials will be preparing a paper for Cabinet to consider tomorrow regarding the timing of the level 4 lockdown which is currently at least three days around the country and at least seven days in Auckland and Coromandel.
"Our aim of course would be to have as short as possible lockdown but it's so important in this situation, we've seen that from the different outcomes in different states in Australia, that ... you go into lockdown type arrangements quickly and you don't lift them too early."
And Covid-19 modeller Professor Shaun Hendy told Morning Report he is reasonably confident that the strict level 4 lockdown will be able to control an outbreak of the Delta variant, but warns that Auckland is likely to be in lockdown for longer than seven days.
Follow RNZ's blog for live Covid-19 updates
***
This is an official COVID-19 ALERT.
All of New Zealand is now at Covid-19 alert level 4.
The alert level will be reviewed after 3 days for all areas EXCEPT Auckland & Coromandel Peninsula which is likely to remain at level 4 for an initial period of 7 days.
A community case of Covid-19 has been identified.
Stay at home where possible & follow the Alert Level 4 guidelines. This will stop the spread of COVID-19 and SAVE LIVES.
Everyone is asked to:
Wear a mask and keep a 2 metre distance from others whenever you leave your home.
If you are sick, call your doctor or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for advice about getting tested.
Keep on scanning QR codes whenever you leave your home.
Practice good hygiene - wash hands often.
Services including supermarkets, pharmacies, clinics & petrol stations will stay open at Alert Level 4. Face coverings are mandatory for all people - both employees and customers - at businesses and services operating at Alert Level 4 involving customer contact.
For more information on Alert Level 4 go to [the government website www.covid19.govt.nz]
***
RNZ is the statutory Lifeline Utility responsible for radio broadcasting under the Emergency Management Act 2002 and it has a memorandum of understanding with Government which has been activated to help deal with potential health issues related to the pandemic. RNZ's Lifeline Utility obligations do not affect our editorial independence as a public media organisation or the rigour of our news gathering and reporting operations.
As New Zealand's Lifeline Utility radio broadcaster, RNZ is required to maintain essential public information channels and news during times of national emergency and we are committed to supporting all New Zealanders.
We are also committed to looking after the health and well-being of our staff.
RNZ will continue to provide essential information services - broadcasting and publishing critical public service announcements on air, on our website and via social media channels. Comprehensive news will be available on air and via our website and digital services.
If necessary RNZ Concert and RNZ Pacific will carry news and information from RNZ National. Parliament will continue to be broadcast on the AM network when the House is sitting. As the country's public service media organisation, RNZ is committed to supporting all New Zealanders.
Kia Kaha - Stay Strong
RNZ
New Zealand's public broadcaster, providing comprehensive NZ news and current affairs, specialist audio features and documentaries.
Radio New Zealand is a Crown entity established under the Radio New Zealand Act 1995. Radio New Zealand News are vital elements in our programming, providing impartial news and information to New Zealanders every day. Radio New Zealand (RNZ) provides listeners with exciting and independent radio programmes in accordance with the Radio New Zealand Charter.

Next in Comment

Totalitarian Cyber-Creep: Mark Zuckerberg In The Metaverse
By: Binoy Kampmark
'Influenza' Pandemics In New Zealand's Past
By: Keith Rankin
When the internet disappears 
By: Digitl
Gasbagging In Glasgow: COP26 And Phasing Down Coal
By: Binoy Kampmark
Why Julian Assange’s Inhumane Prosecution Imperils Justice For Us All
By: Globetrotter
Dunne Speaks: Labour's High Water Mark
By: Peter Dunne
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILE © Scoop Media