Confirmed case at border

A border-related case of COVID-19 has been identified today as part of routine surveillance testing.

The case is an airline crew member who returned to New Zealand from Japan on 28 February, and returned a negative COVID-19 result. The person then subsequently returned a positive test result today after a swab taken yesterday as part of routine surveillance testing.

The person has today moved to Auckland’s quarantine facility.

The individual’s three household family members have already been tested today and the results are all negative.

Fourteen other air crew on the same journey as the latest case are in the process of being contacted, isolated and retested. .

The Public Health initial assessment is there is low risk to the public due to Auckland being at Alert Level 3 for the period in which this case was back in New Zealand and were either in isolation or at home for most of that time

There is currently one location of interest – the Auckland Airport Countdown on 3 March between 12.07pm and 1.22pm.

Anyone who was at the store at this time is asked to monitor their health for the next 10 days (until March 17).

If they feel unwell or develop symptoms, they should contact Healthline on 0800 358 5454, and get tested and stay at home until a negative test result is received.

Testing is available at six community testing centres (CTCs) throughout Auckland as well as at general practices and urgent care clinics.

There is currently good capacity in the testing system, and the CTCs in Otara (South Auckland) and Wiri (West Auckland) have additional staff available to meet any increase in demand. Visit arphs.health.nz/covid19test for testing locations.

There is also one health appointment currently being assessed. All those attending the same clinic at the same time are being identified and will be contacted and provided specific health advice.

The latest case was a frequent user of the app, which is aiding the public health staff to identify potential exposure events and assess any risks from their activities.

Specific advice will be provided to individuals identified as contacts by public health staff about the steps they need to take.

Results from genome sequencing are expected on Tuesday and will help rule out any local transmission.

A further update will be provided tomorrow.

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