2 cases of COVID-19 in managed isolation 24 February

Today, we have two new cases of COVID-19 in managed isolation, and no new cases linked to the Auckland February cluster.

There are now 11 cases associated with this cluster and all cases are in the Auckland quarantine facility.

Genome testing for Case I has shown it to be the B.1.1.7 variant and very closely related to the genome sequence for Cases A and B.

This is what we expected and provides reassurance that the cases yesterday have not appeared in the community at random.

Both cases A and I are genomically linked, both are students at Papatoetoe High and both were at school on 10 February. We haven’t yet established the exact transmission link between the two, but it is likely to have occurred in a common area such as a corridor or bathroom

Advice to the public

The most current information around what people need to do within the different categories of contacts will be available on the Locations of Interest page on the Ministry of Health website.

Contact tracing

Contact tracing has previously identified a total of 126 close contacts associated with the previous two households (Cases A – H). All these contacts have now returned negative test results, except for three close contacts who have not been tested. Two of these are children who are not required to be tested. We have not been able to contact one person from the medical clinic, but we continue to use all avenues to find and follow up with this person. Theirs was considered to be a low risk exposure event.

Of the 1,496 casual plus contacts identified at Papatoetoe High School. 1,487 have returned at least one negative test result. Of the remaining contacts, three were positive cases (Case E, I and J), and 6 students who have not been tested since February 10. The six students who have not been tested since 10 February continue to be actively followed up by the local public health authorities.

In this current instance we are being especially cautious and are managing those present at the locations of interest at the relevant dates and times as if they are close contacts – they must stay at home, isolate for 14 days and get tested at least twice. They will also receive a daily follow up.

Testing in Auckland

There are seven community testing centres available for testing across Auckland today – these are in Wiri, Otara, Botany, Balmoral, New Lynn, Henderson and Northcote, as well as the dedicated testing for staff and students happening on-site at Papatoetoe High School.

DHBs have boosted capacity at all the community testing centres in Auckland, with additional staff and extended hours.

New border case details

There are two new cases of COVID-19 in managed isolation. One of these cases is deemed historical and not infectious.

Arrival date

From

Via

Positive test day/reason

Managed isolation/quarantine location

22 February

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