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COVID-19 update: 172 community cases in New Zealand today

November 20, 2021 12:55 pm

There 172 community cases of COVID-19 in the country today, with 148 identified in Auckland, the Ministry of Health says.

There was no media briefing today. The Ministry of Health said in a statement that there were 70 people in hospital, including five in intensive care.

Today’s cases – which include 97 unlinked cases – were in Auckland, Wellington, Bay of Plenty, Lakes DHB, Waikato, and Northland.

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“The continued spread of Covid-19 to regions throughout New Zealand is a reminder that everyone needs to heed the advice that will help keep our communities as safe as possible,” said the Ministry.

“That includes ensuring you and your loved ones are fully vaccinated if eligible, that you wear a mask, keep a safe distance from people outside your bubble, and keep track of your movements outside your home.”

The Wellington case is the one announced yesterday, which has now been confirmed after a second positive result.

“The initial weak result, combined with the follow-up test, indicates the case is in the early stages of infection. They are self-isolating.”

The Ministry said the case is a user of the Covid-19 tracer app, which will assist with contact tracing and identifying any locations of interest.

So far, one location of interest has been identified – Countdown Cable Car Lane in Wellington Central – and has been added to the Ministry’s website.

The Ministry said investigations have identified a small number of close contacts, including the case’s co-workers, who are currently isolating and being tested. All results from this testing have come back negative.

“We urge anyone in the Wellington region with Covid-19-related symptoms – no matter how mild – to get tested, even if they are vaccinated.”

The three new cases reported in the Bay of Plenty today include two in the same household in Tauranga and one in Mount Maunganui which is connected to an existing case.

A fourth case tested positive after going to the Tauranga Hospital emergency department late last night and will be added to official figures tomorrow.

The Ministry said the risk from last night’s exposure event at Tauranga Hospital is low, but one ward has been closed to both visitors and new patients and three staff members have been stood down as a precaution.

The four new cases in Lakes DHB are two cases connected to the Taupo cluster, one of which is in Rotorua Hospital and two new cases in Rotorua – one is linked to an existing case and potential links have been identified for the second.

There were 12 new cases reported in Waikato today.

There are also four new cases in Northland today, including one in Kaitaia, one in Ruakaka and one in Dargaville. All three of these people are close contacts of existing cases and were already in isolation.

The fourth case lives in Auckland where they are isolating.

There were no cases reported in Christchurch today.

The Ministry said 21 residents and five staff members of Edmonton Meadows Care Home in Henderson have now returned positive tests since the start of the outbreak. Three of the residents who tested positive for Covid-19 are receiving ward-level care at Auckland hospitals.

There were 198 new community cases yesterday – 152 in Auckland, 30 in Waikato, five in Northland, six in the Bay of Plenty, two in the Lakes DHB district, and one each in the MidCentral DHB area, Wairarapa and Canterbury.

There have now been 6701 cases in the current community outbreak and 9461 in New Zealand since the pandemic began.

There were 22,608 vaccine doses given yesterday – 6833 first doses and 15,775 second doses. The Ministry said 91 percent of eligible New Zealanders have had their first dose and 83 percent are fully vaccinated.

The Ministry also said about 900,000 people had now downloaded their My Vaccine Pass.

The system is operating smoothly, and capacity has been increased, so we encourage people to go to MyCovidRecord.health.nz to book their My Vaccine Pass to be ready for summer.

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