Ministry of Health Covid-19 update
July 1, 2020
Again today there are no new cases of Covid-19 to report.
This means the number of active cases in New Zealand remains at 22. All active cases have recently returned from overseas and are or were in managed isolation facilities.
There have been no cases of community transmission.
One person remains in Auckland City Hospital in a stable condition on a ward.
Our total number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 remains at 1178, which is the number we report to the World Health Organization.
Yesterday our laboratories completed 4530 tests, taking us past 400,000 tests to 402,000. This includes testing at managed isolation facilities and community-based testing across the country.
The global picture
“The number of Covid-19 cases worldwide continues to increase and some countries continue to experience a resurgence,” says Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield.
“Yesterday’s developments from Victoria with the imposition of targeted lockdowns reinforce that even countries with strong protocols in place, such as Australia, may need to change tack, sometimes really quickly.
“We have worked very closely with Australia and will continue to do so. We will watch the latest developments closely to see how this approach and the measures they are putting in place, such as localised lockdowns, play out.
“A key takeout for all of us from this is that we must continue to be on guard and vigilant, as individuals, as communities and as a country.
“It’s good news that all of our currently active cases have been caught at the border and there is no evidence of community transmission. However we will continue widespread testing of people with symptoms across the community as part of our ongoing surveillance.
“We also need to continue to draw on the key public health measures New Zealand has reinforced right from day one
- most importantly – if you’re sick, stay home. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise
if you have symptoms of cold or flu call your doctor or Healthline and take advice on getting tested
- good hand hygiene will always be a simple and effective tool
- keep track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen to help with contact tracing if we need it. Download the COVID Tracer app and use it.
- make sure your contact details at your GP or on the app are correct. It’s a simple measure that could make a real difference in the case of an outbreak.
“I also want to reinforce something we talked about in the very early days of the first cases – it’s also important for us to demonstrate compassion to New Zealanders returning home. This is not a time for discrimination.
“I met with Air New Zealand’s chief executive yesterday and he made me aware of some instances where crew following all appropriate procedures are facing some hostility and suspicion in their local communities.
“It’s important to continue supporting each other in these unprecedented times. We have got this far by acting together and we will only continue to do well if we keep doing so.”
Managed isolation contacts
An update on the people who left managed isolation between 9 and 16 June.
A reminder that we have already followed up all 55 people that left the managed isolation facilities early for compassionate or other reasons.
It’s important to remember that the people in the broader group were in isolation facilities for two weeks and have now been out of isolation for two weeks.
A high number of tests around New Zealand during this period has not detected any case of community transmission and any risk from this group can be regarded as very low.
“If you were in a managed isolation facility from June 9 – 16, or know someone who was, we’ve gone to extra effort to make contact and the next step is for people to keep their side of the deal,” says Dr Bloomfield.
“You need to speak with Healthline on their dedicated phone number 09 302 0408.”
In terms of numbers:
Of the 2159 people who left managed isolation facilities between June 9 and June 16, 1302 people have been contacted and have tested negative for Covid-19; 800 of those were tested before leaving managed isolation and the remaining 502 were tested after departure from the facility.
A total of 348 people have been referred for a test.
There are 367 people who we have repeatedly tried to make contact with, including via text and via phone calls.
As needed we will refer people we do not make contact with to finding services. 56 of these had invalid phone numbers, so have already been referred to finding services.
We have had 142 people who will not be tested because of reasons such as being a child, being part of repositioning crew, currently being overseas or they are refusing a test. A total of 84 people have refused testing.
We will continue providing daily updates on this group up to July 3.
NZ Covid Tracer App
We continue to encourage as many people as possible to download and use the app.
It continues to provide us with up to date contact information to support our contact tracing efforts in Level 1. This remains key to New Zealand’s elimination strategy.
Contact tracing and tracking is something we have all become accustomed to talking about over the past months.
However we need to do more than having the app sit on our phones unused because we now feel ‘safe’.
If a case in the community were to be detected, we would immediately launch contact tracing. If we can’t contact you, it makes it harder for us to manage tracing
We can’t afford to be apathetic or blase around tracing and tracking.
Please sign up for the app if you haven’t done so already and when you have it, keep using it.
Businesses – please continue to register, to display the posters and to encourage your customers to check in.
“On another zero cases day, we can all remain proud of how far we’ve all come,” says Dr Bloomfield.
“I can assure you that from a Ministry of Health perspective, we aren’t complacent. We continue making sure we’re ready for any further developments, staying ready and prepared for something that’s not over yet.
“Our specific actions include continuing to strengthen the national contact tracing system, improvements to recording of NHI numbers for border arrivals and ‘stress testing’ around our testing capacity should we need to ramp this up further.
“We must all continue to be vigilant and work together.”