15 Nov 2022

Daily Covid-19 cases top 4000 for first time since August

12:33 pm on 15 November 2022

There were 4282 daily Covid-19 cases reported today, breaking a plateau that has lasted about three weeks.

Collage of Covid test and person wearing a mask.

Covid-19 cases began to increase in mid-October. Photo: 123rf.com / Composite Image - RNZ

The number was 9.4 percent higher than the previous Tuesday, usually the highest day of the week because it captured some slow weekend reporting.

The last time cases were in the 4000s was 17 August, as the country came down from the major winter wave.

Cases began to increase again in mid-October, before hitting the plateau.

The Ministry of Health said it expected the current infection wave to keep rising but could not accurately predict when that would happen and how big it would be.

Experts have said that was because it was unclear how the several new variants would play out, and what the impact of immunity from previous infections will be.

It said BQ 1.1 was increasing faster than the previous dominant variant BA.5 and the new arrival XBB is showing some evidence of being able to evade people's immunity but more evidence was needed.

Wastewater testing suggested about 45 percent of all cases were being reported.

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