Covid-19 update: No new community cases in New Zealand today, two in managed isolation

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There were no new community cases reported in New Zealand today, with just two cases in managed isolation.

Image of flu COVID-19 virus cell. Coronavirus Covid 19 outbreak influenza background. Pandemic medical health risk. 3D illustration concept.

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In a statement, the Health Ministry said the total number of active cases was 51 and the total number of confirmed cases was 1994.

The two new cases both arrived in New Zealand in the same travel bubble from the United Arab Emirates on 18 February.

There was one new community case reported yesterday, a household contact of three previous community cases in Auckland.

The ministry said today that all close contacts associated with those cases had returned negative results, other than the known cases which have been reported.

“Contact tracing has identified a total of 128 close contacts associated with all cases in this cluster, aside from the positive cases which have previously been reported. Of these, 120 of the close contacts have returned a negative test result. We are awaiting test results for eight people.”

There are nine community testing centres operating in Auckland this weekend – they are in Takanini, Wiri, Ōtara, Botany, Balmoral, New Lynn, Henderson and Northcote, as well as the dedicated testing site at Papatoetoe High School.

The ministry said further results from ESR’s wastewater testing have been received and show no evidence of Covid-19.

“Samples taken on 18 February at four Auckland sites including a site near Papatoetoe and at sites in Christchurch and Hamilton have all returned negative results.”

Starting today, vaccine jabs are being given to the country’s border and managed isolation and quarantine workers. They will need a second shot of the vaccine within 21 days. Yesterday around 25 of the nurses who are giving the vaccines were immunised with their first dose.

Auckland University vaccinologist Helen Petousis-Harris said today is a key point in the pandemic fightback.

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