18 Sep 2020

Back to zero: No new cases of Covid-19 reported in New Zealand today

1:18 pm on 18 September 2020

There are no new cases of Covid-19 to report in New Zealand today, for the first time since early August.

Hands in medical gloves holding COVID-19 swab. Test tube for taking patient sample, PCR DNA testing protocol process. Nasal swab laboratory test in hospital lab.

Photo: 123RF

There was no media conference today. In a statement, the Health Ministry said the number of active cases had dropped to 70, with seven more people now recovered from the coronavirus.

The 70 active cases include 33 are imported cases in MIQ facilities and 37 community cases.

The last time the country reported zero new cases was on 10 August, the day before the Auckland cluster was revealed.

There have now been no new cases in the community for four days, with some imported cases reported.

The Health Ministry said four people were in hospital with Covid-19 - one each at Auckland City and North Shore hospitals and two in Middlemore. Three are in isolation on a ward, while one is in ICU at Middlemore Hospital.

The total number of confirmed cases remains at 1458.

New Zealand's laboratories processed 7360 tests yesterday.

Yesterday seven new cases of Covid-19 were reported in New Zealand, all managed isolation facilities, and most of them detected in day 3 testing.

A South Auckland school principal told RNZ he acted within minutes of finding out one of its pupils was positive for Covid-19. Some parents were upset that despite the positive test result on Monday afternoon they were not notified until Wednesday. But principal Vaughan van Rensburg said he first learned of the positive test on Wednesday afternoon.

In international developments, new weekly coronavirus cases in Europe have exceeded the numbers reported when the pandemic first peaked in March, the World Health Organisation has said.

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