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Coronavirus cases in New Zealand rises to 52

There have been 13 more cases of coronavirus in New Zealand, bringing the total to 52.

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Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said he could not rule out the possibility of community spread. Source: 1 NEWS

There were four new cases in Wellington, three in Auckland, one in Waikato, one in Taupō, two in Manawatu and two in Nelson, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced today. There are also four probable cases.

Most of the cases are travel-related, but two cases linked to overseas travel has yet to be determined, he said.

"We cannot rule out a risk of community transmission in these cases," Dr Bloomfield said. 

"We always knew that cases apparently not linked to travel would happen and we are prepared for that, and it is now more important than ever that we continue our efforts to track and trace individuals who may have been in contact with confirmed Covid-19 cases and get those people into self-isolation so that we can contain any further spread."

Three of the confirmed cases are in hospital, including a man in his 60s in Lakes District Hospital in Queenstown, a woman in Nelson, and a woman in North Shore Hospital, Dr Bloomfield said. 

The Ministry of Health is currently in the process of contacting the 56 New Zealanders on board the Ruby Princess, including 28 who have since returned to the country, after three Australian passengers and a crew member tested positive for coronavirus.

Further details on the new cases will be made available on the Ministry of Health website as they are finalised. 

It was previously reported as 14 new cases, bringing the total to 53. The Ministry of Health has since issued a correction.