New Zealand Confirms First Coronavirus Case In Months

WELLINGTON, Jan 25 (Reuters) — New Zealand on Monday confirmed its first case of COVID-19 in the neighborhood in months in a 56-year-old girl, however stated shut contacts of the just lately returned traveler had up to now examined unfavourable.

The lady, who returned to New Zealand on Dec. 30, had examined optimistic for the South African pressure of the virus after leaving a two-week obligatory quarantine the place she had twice examined unfavourable, COVID-19 response minister Chris Hipkins stated.

No different neighborhood circumstances had been reported for the reason that girl’s case was disclosed on Sunday and authorities stated the supply of the an infection was most likely a fellow returnee on the quarantine facility.

Authorities had been whether or not the virus was spreading via the air flow and air-con programs in these amenities, Hipkins stated.

New Zealand Well being Chief Ashley Bloomfield stated 15 folks had been recognized as shut contacts of the lady and had been being contacted.

Nonetheless, her closest contacts, her husband and hairdresser, had examined unfavourable, which was encouraging.

Affirmation of the case led Australia to right away droop a journey bubble with New Zealand for 72 hours.

Director-General of Health Dr. Ashley Bloomfield speaks to media during a press conference at Parliament on Jan. 24, 2021, in

Director-Common of Well being Dr. Ashley Bloomfield speaks to media throughout a press convention at Parliament on Jan. 24, 2021, in Wellington, New Zealand. 

Anybody arriving from New Zealand since Jan. 14 might want to isolate and keep residence till they check unfavourable for COVID-19. Anybody arriving within the subsequent 72 hours must go straight into lodge quarantine.

“This can be carried out out of an abundance of warning while extra is discovered in regards to the occasion and the case,” Australian Well being Minister Greg Hunt stated late on Monday.

He stated the case was of concern due to the transmissibility of the South African variant and since the lady had been in the neighborhood.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern stated her Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison, knowledgeable her of the transfer on Monday afternoon.

“I suggested him that we now have confidence in our programs and processes, however it’s Australia’s resolution as to how they handle their borders,” Ardern advised TVNZ.

New Zealand, probably the most profitable developed nations in controlling the unfold of the pandemic, final recorded a neighborhood coronavirus transmission in November, based on the Well being Ministry web site.

A troublesome lockdown and geographical isolation helped the nation of 5 million nearly get rid of the novel coronavirus inside its borders.

New Zealand has had just one,927 confirmed circumstances. However with the pandemic raging globally, extra persons are returning with infections, together with the brand new variants, elevating considerations the virus could unfold in the neighborhood once more.

The lady, who lives in Northland on New Zealand’s North Island, quarantined on arrival in a managed isolation facility in Auckland the place a number of extremely virulent COVID-19 circumstances have been recorded in quarantine amenities in latest weeks.

Bloomfield stated the South African variant could also be extra transmissible however there was not but sufficient analysis accessible.

(Reporting Praveen Menon; Further reporting Sonali Paul in Melbourne; Modifying Richard Pullin and Sam Holmes)

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