No new cases of COVID-19
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Posted June 19, 2020
Media Release: Ministry of Health
There are no new cases of COVID-19 to report in New Zealand today. Yesterday laboratories completed 6,273 tests, bringing the total number of tests completed to date to 327,460.
This is a high number of tests, that represent a mix of testing in the community, but also testing at managed isolation and quarantine facilities, and following up people who may have had contact with recent confirmed cases.
Another two significant clusters have closed today – those associated with the wedding in Bluff, and the Rosewood rest home. There is one remaining significant cluster that is still open – associated with St Margaret’s Hospital and Rest Home in Auckland.
Managed isolation protocols
Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said the mandatory 14-day stay in managed isolation or quarantine is the key part of our border security, with the routine testing we have since added an additional measure to strengthen the border.
“Since 11.59pm on April 9 when the managed isolation regime was implemented, we have had more than 19,000 people stay in a managed isolation or quarantine facility.”
“Since then, anybody who was symptomatic at the border or who developed symptoms during the 14-day isolation period was put in a dedicated quarantine facility and tested for COVID-19.
“From June 9, additional measures at the border have been rolled out to ensure our safety net was catching imported cases of COVID-19.
“We have added to our existing strong arrangements the requirement for routine testing on day 3 and 12 for every person, whether they are symptomatic or not.
“These changes meant that everyone in managed isolation will be tested twice for COVID-19 and will need to have returned a negative test result before leaving a facility.
“No one is now allowed to leave managed isolation, for any reason, without returning a negative test for COVID-19,” Dr Bloomfield said.
From June 9 – 16, 55 people were granted leave from managed isolation on compassionate grounds.
The vast majority have been tested and returned a negative result, or have returned to a facility where they will be tested. We are working our way through the remaining people as quickly as possible. It’s important to emphasise that anyone who departed a facility on compassionate grounds had a set of very strict criteria to ensure there was no risk to the wider community as part of their exemption from managed isolation.
On June 16, exemptions from managed isolation on compassionate grounds were suspended.
Yesterday across managed isolation facilities there were 1061 tests completed, including through five mobile units at facilities in Auckland.
There are 692 tests scheduled today with the testing being provided by six mobile units.
The Ministry of Health now has 401 possible contacts of the two cases announced on 16 June.
They can confirm 174 have returned negative results, with the remainder still pending.
The breakdown of testing is: 4 aircrew; 97 hotel and health staff in facility; 71 former hotel guests; and 2 exempted individuals.
This demonstrates the significant number of precautionary tests that have been undertaken around these new cases of COVID-19 – extra measures are being taken to ensure potential contacts have been followed up and tested as appropriate.