Waikato District Health Board is asking the communities in and around Kaiaua, Whakatīwai, Mangatangi, and Maramarua to take extra precautions today as public health officials investigate confirmed COVID-19 cases in a local household.
Three household members of a remand prisoner with COVID-19 were confirmed as testing positive for the virus yesterday. Two of the three household members attended Mangatangi School on Miranda Road.
Anyone who attended the school on Wednesday 15 September and Thursday 16 September is considered a close contact and has been asked to self-isolate and seek a COVID-19 test. The DHB’s Public Health unit are working closely with the school, which was not opened today, to provide guidance.
Te Korowai Hauora o Hauraki is operating a drive-through testing centre at Wharekawa Marae, Cnr Rata Road and East Coast Road, Kaiaua today and Tuesday from 9 am to 3 pm, with support from the DHB. The centre had processed 150 swabs in the first two hours of operation.
Waikato DHB Chief Executive Dr Snee said all tests would be fast tracked with results expected late tonight.
He said experts from Waikato DHB and Auckland Regional Public Health were working rapidly to confirm whether there had been any further transmission.
“Our advice to the local community is to exercise an abundance of caution at this stage. If you are able to stay home, please do. For those who do need to go out, please take extra care to wear a mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands regularly.”
Dr Snee said the DHB was following this advice with a restricted visitor policy from 2 pm today (full details on our website) and services across all hospitals reduced to acute and urgent care only from tomorrow, with outpatient clinics utilising virtual and phone consults wherever possible. Thames Hospital also began surveillance testing of all incoming patients from last night.
“These are difficult decisions to make as they have a significant impact. However, the decision has been made to take a cautious approach, prioritising the safety of our patients and staff. Once we have a better understanding of whether there has been further community transmission, we will review this decision.
“The DHB will be contacting all affected individuals to discuss options for treatment and/or deferral if required and apologise for any inconvenience or distress this disruption may cause.”
COVID-19 Testing Centres
· Drive-through testing centre at Wharekawa Marae, Cnr Rata Road and East Coast Road, Kaiaua, Monday 20 September and Tuesday 21 September, 9 am to 3 pm.
· Designated GP practices across the Waikato and the community testing centre at Founders Theatre, Norton Road, Hamilton also have testing capacity.
· For a full list of locations where people can get a COVID-19 test, go to Healthpoint or call your GP to check if they are testing.
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