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Another mariner tests positive for Covid-19 in managed isolation; no cases in community

There is one new case of Covid-19 to report in managed isolation today, and there are no new cases in the community.

Testing for Covid-19 (file photo). Source: istock.com

It’s the seventh consecutive day since the last community-transmitted case of Covid-19 in New Zealand. The last such case was recorded on Friday last week.

The one case from managed isolation is part of the group of Russian and Ukranian fishermen who tested positive in the Sudima quarantine facility in Christchurch last week, the Ministry of Health said.

The person is a close contact of the group of fishermen.

"The isolated positive case reported today in the Christchurch-based international mariners group, which was a close contact of an existing case, gives us confidence that the standard practice for managing cases and contacts within managed isolation, supplemented by extending the isolation period and additional testing, was the right approach to take in the circumstances," the Ministry of Health said.

Day 15 testing will be carried out this weekend of all members of the group who are not already confirmed cases.

Those who have recovered or have returned consistent negative tests throughout their stay would be allowed to leave managed isolation from next Tuesday. 

Meanwhile, genome sequencing in Queensland has revealed one crew member of the Sofrana Surville who tested positive for Covid-19 has the same strain as the cases in Auckland.

"The Brisbane sequence was one mutation earlier than the genomes sequenced from our New Zealand cases. This supports our view that the index case in this group was infected by on board exposure to new crew members who joined the Sofrana Surville in Auckland.

"We continue to investigate the exact circumstances where the infection might have occurred to inform any changes to protocols designed to keep workers and our communities safe."

A port worker tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this month after developing symptoms days after he had tested negative as part of a regular testing regime. Colleagues of the worker then tested positive for the virus.

Following the cases, replacement international maritime crew coming into New Zealand and departing will have to take a Covid-19 test, Health Minister Chris Hipkins announced today.

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Under the current rules, crew that are flown here are taken straight to the port if their ship leaves that day. Source: 1 NEWS

Three Covid-19 cases have now recovered, bringing the total number of active cases in the country to 68. The total number of confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic is now 1594.

The Ministry of Health confirmed today’s numbers via a statement. 

Yesterday, the Ministry of Health reported six new cases of Covid-19 in managed isolation.

Yesterday, laboratories completed 7472 tests for Covid-19, bringing the total number of tests completed to date to 1,090,702.