Covid 19 coronavirus: Open home held at house of virus-positive family; No new community cases

Three people attended an open home at a household where three family members tested positive for Covid-19.

The viewing took place at the Papatoetoe home of Cases I, J and K on Saturday before the Papatoetoe High School student and her siblings tested positive for the virus on Monday.

The schoolgirl stayed in a bedroom throughout the event, according to The Spinoff.

The viewing lasted half-an-hour and the real estate agent and three attendees were all contacted by Public Health officials on Tuesday. They have all been tested and are awaiting their results.

The home is not regarded as a location of interest as the identities of everyone present is known.

There are no new cases of Covid-19 in the community and three in MIQ, the Ministry of Health has reported.

One of the three cases in managed isolation today is a historical case and not regarded as infectious.

Of the 11 positive cases linked to Auckland’s February cluster, all remain in the Auckland quarantine facility.

Genome testing results now available for Case K has shown it to be the B.1.1.7 variant and again very closely related to the genome sequence for Cases A and B.

“This provides further reassurance that the cases from the additional household announced on Tuesday have not appeared from elsewhere in the community,” the Ministry of Health said. “All cases that have been sequenced in this cluster are genomically linked and are connected to the cases at Papatoetoe High School.”

There were now 31 close contacts at Papatoetoe High linked to Case A, the ministry said.

One of these tested positive (Case D). All others have tested negative for Covid-19.

The remaining students and staff at the school have been designated as casual plus contacts of Case A.

As at 8am today, there have been 1525 casual plus contacts identified at the school.

“Excluding the three positive cases (Case E, I and J), 1490 have returned at least one negative test result since February 15,” the ministry said. “We have asked all these casual plus contacts to have an additional test on or after February 22. So far all results from the additional testing have been negative.”

“We continue to work closely with the school to ensure all those in the school community who need to be tested are. Where necessary, this includes visits to students homes to make sure people are getting the support they need to access testing and remain isolated.”

Kmart Botany contacts

A total of 15 staff members have been identified as close plus** contacts of the teenage girl, who worked two shifts at Kmart Botany and later tested positive to Covid.

Health teams lowered this number after further investigation on their contact with the girl. All these people have been contacted and are self-isolating, with eight returning a negative test so far.

“We have also been contacted by 1236 people who reported being at the store at the times of interest. They have been provided with public health advice,” the ministry said.

All have been asked to isolate for 14 days and be tested at day 5 and day 12 after their exposure to the case.

“We encourage anyone who has visited the store at the times of interest to contact Healthline. We expect this number to increase.”

Close plus contacts

The ministry said it had designated the close plus** contact category for individuals, who are advised to do the same as a close contact and to also keep their household members at home in isolation until they return a negative day 5 test.

Close contacts are advised to self isolate for 14 days and be tested on day 5 and day 12.
In both cases, if the individual close contact or close plus contact develops symptoms then their household contacts should again stay home until the contact is cleared with an additional test.

“Close plus” is an existing approach, the Ministry said. The classification of close plus contact helps provide flexibility in terms of the public health response to public exposure events as well as helping standardise the approach for health services.

In essence the close plus contact category is used where the risk of transmission is higher, and it means that the contact’s household members are then already in isolation should they subsequently test positive, the ministry said.

Testing in Auckland

Since Sunday, February 14, there have been more than 53,000 community tests for Covid-19 in the Northern Region. The ministry said the rapid testing response played a pivotal role in managing the latest outbreak.

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

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

Cases in managed isolation

Of the three new cases in managed isolation, one flew in from the United Arab Emirates on February 18 and tested positive on day 5 of their stay.

Another tested positive on day 3 after arriving from Papua New Guinea on February 20, and the third tested positive on day 12 testing after flying in on February 11.

The total number of active cases in New Zealand is 65. The total number of confirmed cases is 2012.

On Wednesday, 9269 tests were processed. The seven-day rolling average up to yesterday is 7671 tests processed.

NZ Covid Tracer app

“It remains critical to keep track of where you’ve been and the Covid Tracer app is an easy way to do this. Please continue to scan QR codes wherever you go and turn on Bluetooth tracing in the app dashboard if you haven’t already done so,” the ministry said.


Source: Read Full Article