Eleven Southland Hospital staff and two patients are in self-isolation after a patient came in for surgery and did not say they had Covid-19 symptoms, only to later test positive for the virus.
Southern District Health Board said the patient, who was able to have their surgery completed, shared a room with the two other patients who have tested negative.
- If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, call the NZ Covid-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 (+64 9 358 5453 for international SIMs) or call your GP - don't show up at a medical centre
Hospital controller Jo McLeod said: "our thoughts are with the patient and we understand this has been a very difficult situation.
"We just want to reinforce that it is very important for patients to disclose any symptoms that they may have, even if they don't seem serious or significant at the time,"
Two other hospital staff who were casual contacts of the patients have been contacted but have not had to self-isolate, the Southern DHB said.
Read more about the Covid-19 coronavirus:
- See all RNZ Covid-19 news
- Covid-19 symptoms: What they are and how they make you feel
- Touching your Face: Why do we do it and how to stop
- Scientific hand-washing advice to avoid infection
- A timeline: How the coronavirus started, spread and stalled life in New Zealand
- Coronavirus: A glossary of terms
- The Coronavirus Podcast