30 Mar 2020

Coronavirus: Total number of Covid-19 cases in NZ rises to 589

4:04 pm on 30 March 2020

There have been 76 new cases of Covid-19 confirmed in New Zealand, with 12 people now in hospital.

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said the total number of cases in the country now stands at 589, and there have been no additional deaths.

Sixty-three people have now recovered.

Twelve people are currently in hospitals around the country - two are in ICU.

Watch the most recent media conference here:

He said there was still a "strong link" to overseas travel.

He said of the 455 cases that the Health Ministry had sufficient information, 57 percent have a direct link to overseas travel, 26 are close contacts with existing cases, 15 percent have both, and just 2 percent - or about 10 cases - are currently community transmission.

Dr Bloomfield said contact tracing was a work in progress but capacity was increasing - it sometimes took six to seven phone calls to try and contact someone.

He said flu vaccinations were going to a vital part of the fight against Covid-19.

"Because if we vaccinate people, then we can reduce pressure on our hospital system, particularly through winter."

He said it was "very important" that vaccinations were being reserved for high priority groups - over 65 and those with likely health complications.

He said those not in the group should not expect to be vaccinated before mid-April.

Dr Bloomfield has asked New Zealanders to register with Flutracking for surveillance of Covid-19.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush said two police staff had tested positive for Covid-19. They are at home and had not been hospitalised.

Several hundred police officers around the country are in self-isolation as a result.

  • If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, call the NZ Covid-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 (+64 9 358 5453 for international SIMs)

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