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1 new case of COVID-19

1 new case of COVID-19

Posted July 21, 2020

Media Release: Ministry of Health

Today there is one new case of COVID-19 in managed isolation to report.

It has now been 81 days since the last case of COVID-19 was acquired locally from an unknown source.

Today’s case is a woman in her 30s who arrived in the country last Thursday from London, via Doha and Sydney.

She was staying at the Novotel Ellerslie and tested positive following day 3 surveillance testing. She has now been transferred to the Auckland quarantine facility.

The number of active cases in New Zealand is now 27.

There is no one in New Zealand receiving hospital-level care for COVID-19.

The total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 is now 1,205, which is the number reported to the World Health Organization.

TestingYesterday, laboratories processed 1007 tests. The seven-day rolling daily average number of tests is 1,984, and the total number of tests completed in New Zealand to date is 444,176.

This morning, the Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield led a round table discussion with clinical leaders from the Colleges of GPs, Urgent Care, Emergency Medicine and from Healthline about increasing the amount of community based testing for people with respiratory symptoms.

‘We are all extremely conscious of and motivated by the situation Melbourne now finds itself in. Small breaches there have led to extremely serious consequences. The health system in Victoria, healthcare workers and the general public are now all at renewed risk’, Dr Bloomfield said.

Testing remains a fundamental part of our overall response and we all have a part to play here.

There are three areas of action underway:

First, the Colleges are sending a message to all their members later today, confirming that they should offer testing to all people who present with symptoms.

They will also be surveying their members to ensure that they have all the resources they need to do the testing and to identify any barriers to offering testing that we can then address.

The second area of focus is working with the district health boards to ensure testing is widely available, including at general practices and community-based assessment centres.

‘We need general practitioners to be confident that they will be paid if they do a COVID-19 swab on anyone and I can reiterate the message that it will be free to have a swab done’, Dr Bloomfield said.

Which brings me to the third area of action and that is where all New Zealanders have a role to play. If you are offered a swab, then please take up that offer.

Dr Bloomfield reinforced that testing in the community is fundamental to our efforts to ensure we stay ahead of COVID-19.

Testing at the borderThe programme to test people working at Managed Isolation Facilities and at the border is now well underway and we are finalising the frequency with which people at those facilities will need to be tested.

This programme provides additional assurance that we are continuing to detect and contain COVID-19 at the border. It’s in addition to testing for those who have symptoms which is already well established.

The Ministry wishes to thank employers for working with us to support this programme and to all who have been tested, along with all the measures you take to keep yourselves safe and keep COVID-19 out of our communities.

They are asking DHBs and health providers to report to us on a weekly basis.

Between the 8th and 19th of July, they report border testing of 405 workers