New rules put in place for businesses, Kiwis with links to community cases

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have implemented new Covid-19 rules to certain New Zealanders and businesses following yesterday's news of four community-based cases.

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield speaks on August 12 Source: Getty

Dr Bloomfield exercised an oral direction of the Public Health Act to require people from two workplaces in Auckland linked to the community cases to isolate at home and do not go to work until they have been contacted by public health officials. 

That included any employees or contractors of Americold in Mt Wellington, Auckland and the Dominion Rd branch of Finance Now. 

It also included any any visitors to those workplaces and any people who ordinarily live with those workers, contractors and visitors. 

Businesses also have one week to display the Covid-19 QR code, which is now mandatory, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today.

The rules came after Dr Bloomfield confirmed this afternoon a further four probable cases of Covid-19 are linked with the community-based cases that were confirmed last night. 

Dr Bloomfield also revealed more information about the Rotorua trip of the family while one person had symptoms. 

"We are confident the visit of the four family members (two returned a positive test) has not resulted in close contacts," he said. 

They were there from August 8-11 and visited a number of places including eateries. 

They stayed at the Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort and visited the Skyline Gondala and lodge on August 9 from 4-6pm and the Heritage Farm and 3D Art Gallery from 3-4pm on August 10. 

The four probable cases were people with symptoms linked to the community based cases. 

"All of these people are awaiting test results. They are all being treated as probable cases so in isolation," Dr Bloomfield said. 

It comes as Auckland moved into Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country to Alert Level 2 at noon today until midnight Friday.

Four probable Covid-19 cases linked to infections in community, Dr Bloomfield invokes Public Health Act powers

It was spurred by four new Covid-19 cases from a South Auckland family acquired through possible community transmission - the source is still unknown. 

The family are still in isolation at home and authorities are looking into whether they should go into quarantine facilities. 

Ms Ardern said they were looking for potential casual contacts in Rotorua and looking for the source in Auckland. 

All aged care facilities have entered lockdown as of noon today (except for staff).

Ministry of Health yesterday reported there was 22 active Covid-19 cases in the country. Four more were confirmed yesterday evening.