Recommended Sponsor - Buy Original Artwork Directly from the Artist

The Auckland Hospital nurse who has tested positive for covid-19 worked four shifts not knowing she had the virus, says New Zealand’s Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield.

The 21-year-old nurse is a flatmate of a man who worked with the first case to be discovered and announced yesterday. She was fully vaccinated, the Ministry of Health said earlier.

Auckland Hospital had written to all staff asking them to stay home if unwell, to wear masks and to restrict their movement around the central city buildings as much as possible.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said there had not been any cases from New South Wales at Auckland Hospital.

Dr Bloomfield said there was no suggestion that the nurse worked in any other health facilities.

There are two new cases of covid-19 in the community, in addition to the four announced earlier today.

Dr Bloomfield said that brought the total number of community cases to seven.

All case friends
He said the two new cases were linked to the current outbreak and were in Auckland. They are friends with the four cases reported this morning.

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield
NZ’s Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield … with the latest cases being active young people in their 20s, many locations of interest are expected. Image: Samuel Rillstone/RNZ

Dr Bloomfield said there were also three cases in managed isolation.

The other four cases found earlier today include a work colleague of the case found yesterday, who is a 20-year-old man. He has three flatmates — including the Auckland Hospital nurse — and has been working in recent days.

There is also a 25-year-old teacher at Avondale College and a 29-year-old man.

The two more recent cases found today include a 21-year-old woman and 19-year-old man who both live in Auckland and are linked to the current cases as friends.

The wife of the original case has returned a second negative test.

Dr Bloomfield said contact tracing capacity had been increased, and with the latest cases being active young people in their 20s, there were expected to be many locations of interest.

Locations updating
Those locations would be constantly updated as more information comes to hand, he said.

Dr Bloomfield said calls to Healthline should be restricted to seeking a test.

On genome sequencing, Prime Minister Ardern said overnight it has been confirmed that the outbreak was the delta variant, and that it was linked to the NSW outbreak.

She said only three positive cases had arrived into MIQ from Sydney since 1 July. One on August 9 on their day 1 test, and two on August 14 on their day three test.

These three cases were being genome sequenced right now, as part of the usual processes, Ardern said.

Ardern said everyone who came from NSW and Queensland was compliant with the travel restrictions.

She said despite that, the government was preparing to contact all cases who had arrived from Australia should they find the community case was not linked to the three positive cases from MIQ.

This article is republished under a community partnership agreement with RNZ.

Article by