1 Sep 2021

Covid-19 update: 75 new community cases in NZ today

2:41 pm on 1 September 2021

There are 75 new cases of Covid-19 in the community, the Ministry of Health has reported.

Covid 19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins, and Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield hold the 1pm Covid Update in the Beehive Theatrette at Parliament.

Photo: Pool / Stuff

Speaking at today's government briefing, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said one of the new cases was in Wellington and the rest in Auckland.

The Wellington case is a household contact, had been in isolation, and remains asymptomatic. Dr Bloomfield said it showed the importance of remaining in isolation and having the day 14 test.

There was one new case reported at the border.

Yesterday 49 new community cases were reported, a fall from Monday.

Dr Bloomfield said there was no cause for alarm with a rise in cases from yesterday.

He said the R value, based on the latest modelling continues to be promising. There is a 90 percent probability it remains under 1, showing the lockdown is continuing to work and chains of transmission are being broken.

Bloomfield said with yesterday's cases, 57 percent were contacts of an existing case and 75 percent did not create any exposure events.

Watch today's briefing here:

There are 32 people in hospital. Eight are in intensive care and three are on ventilation. All are in Auckland hospitals - 13 in Middlemore, 14 in Auckland City and 5 in North Shore.

The number of cases in the current community outbreak has now risen to 687.

Demand for testing in Auckland remains strong with more than 6500 tests yesterday across the Auckland region.

About 40 supermarkets across Auckland are being added to the locations of interest, Bloomfield said. The events are deemed to be low-risk but people who have been there should watch for symptoms.

Wastewater testing results show no unexpected detections, and a sample from Moa point in Wellington has retuned a negative result for the first time since 18 August.

Testing in Northland suggests the region will be able to move to alert level 3 tomorrow night, he said.

Bloomfield said testers processed their three millionth test yesterday.

Overnight most of the country, from the southern outskirts of Auckland south, changed from alert level 4 to 3. For many that's meant takeaway coffees, and take-out are back on the menu, and many providers have improvised to find ways to open while following the new rules.

Auckland is in level 4 until 14 September, and Northland is likely to step down to level 3 from 11:59pm on Thursday. Here's a reminder of the rules at alert level 3 and alert level 4.

Police have set up five checkpoints on the southern outskirts of Auckland, to check those travelling across the region's border are allowed to. So far, they said compliance has been good, with only minimal delays for travellers.

Speaking to Morning Report today, Dr Bloomfield said to keep vaccination rates high, if extra vaccines can't be secured through September, the vaccination roll-out may be slowed in the rest of the country to maintain a high rate in Auckland.

He rejected criticisms Auckland hospitals were not well- prepared for large numbers of Covid-19 patients, and said builders were at work in two Auckland hospitals, including work to create a designated Covid-19 patient area.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff is urging residents to get Covid-19 vaccinations, with the rollout now open to everyone over the age of 12, and the Delta variant affecting people of all ages.

He says a higher level of community vaccination is the key to beating the disease, preventing deaths and paving the way to open the border.

Contact tracing locations of interest continue to be updated, and can be checked here.

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