4 May 2020

All Marist students and staff asked to get tested for Covid-19

10:36 am on 4 May 2020

All students and staff at Auckland's Marist College are being urged to get tested for Covid-19.

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Marist College. Photo: Marist College

Ninety-four people connected with the school have tested positive for the coronavirus making it the country's second largest cluster.

Students and staff are this week being given vouchers that will enable them to get tested.

While it's voluntary, school principal Raechelle Taulu encourages everyone to get tested, regardless of whether or not they're symptomatic.

She said it'll provide reassurance to the school community as they move to reopen.

While only half of the 94 cases in the Marist cluster were directly associated with the college, it was important that the wider school community is given the opportunity to be tested, the Auckland DHB said.

  • 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

Auckland Regional Public Health Service Director Dr William Rainger said there was a low likelihood of new cases being detected, but it was important to take every precaution.

"This round of testing will help give students, parents and school staff reassurance and inform planning for the re-opening of the College. When that moment arrives, the College can be confident that there is no higher risk of a student or staff member being infectious at Marist College than at any other school in New Zealand."

*See all RNZ coverage of Covid-19

The school was first closed in March after a staff member tested positive for the virus.

The entire school of about 750 students, as well as staff, is classed as close contacts and they have been asked to keep to strict isolation rules.

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