29 Jan 2022

Covid-19: Omicron cases could double in days - modeller

12:51 pm on 29 January 2022

A Covid-19 modeller says the number of Omicron cases could double by the end of the weekend.

People line up at a Covid-19 vaccination centre

Nearly all vaccination centres across Tāmaki Makaurau will be open over Auckland Anniversary weekend. Photo: RNZ / Angus Dreaver

Yesterday there were 105 new community cases - 15 of which were confirmed to be the Omicron variant, bringing the total number of Omicron cases to 105 also.

Professor Michael Plank said Omicron cases tended to double in two to four days at the start of an outbreak.

"We could see numbers continue to shoot up into the several hundreds over the next week or so."

Some of the community cases confirmed to have the Omicron variant attended large events which scientists say could cause the outbreak to spread more quickly.

Vaccination centres operating over Auckland Anniversary weekend

Nearly all vaccination centres across Tāmaki Makaurau will be open over Auckland Anniversary weekend, to allow people to get their booster doses and to have their tamariki immunised in time for the start of the new school year.

Northern region clinical director Anthony Jordan said more than 300 GPs and pharmacies across the city were delivering paediatric vaccinations.

He said it was paramount children were protected, with school staring next week and Omicron in the community.

Jordan said vaccinations would reduce the spread and severity of the variant.

New close contact locations of interest identified

Two new locations of interest in the Waikato Region and one on Auckland's North Shore have been identified as close contact venues.

People are being asked to self-isolate and get tested immedately if they were at the Gurudwara Mata Sahib Kaur Ji Temple in Te Rapa last Saturday afternoon (22 January), or at One-Three-One Restaurant Cafe and Bar in Paeroa on Monday, 24 January, from just after 6pm until 8pm.

Sushi Tomo in Milford on Auckland's North Shore is also listed as a close contact location for people who were there between 2.18pm and 3.18pm on Thursday, 20 January.

Last night, Air New Zealand flight 5077 between Auckland and Nelson on the afternoon of 16 January, was named as a close contact location, with exposure linked to a suspected Omicron case.

Anyone who was at the above locations at the times specified is asked to self-isolate and get tested immediately, as well as five days after the exposure date.

A full list of current locations of interest can be found on the Ministry of Health website.

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