NZ's coronavirus cases top 100, after 36 more positive tests

The number of new coronavirus cases in New Zealand has risen by 36, increasing the total number from 66 to 102.

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Dr Ashley Bloomfield says there are 36 new cases, bringing the total to 102. Source: 1 NEWS

Fronting media today, Ministry of Health Director-General of Health Doctor Ashley Bloomfield updated New Zealand's number of cases and response to Covid-19.

Of the new cases today, over half had returned from overseas recently. Most of the remaining are close contacts of previously confirmed cases or are associated with an event where there were confirmed cases already, including the Queenstown World Hereford Cattle conference.

There remain two cases being treated as community transmission as it is not clear where the infection came from. Those cases are in Wairarapa and Auckland.

 “The important thing is that we find these cases, we isolate them, we identify close contacts and we isolate those people too,” Dr Bloomfield said.

“Our contact tracing efforts are incredibly important, and they are being ramped up to support this public health response.”

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More than 1200 laboratory tests for Covid-19 were carried out yesterday, bringing the total number in New Zealand to over 7400.

Mr Bloomfield reiterated public health advice of physical distancing, cough and sneeze etiquette, hand washing and to stay home if unwell.

“It’s very important that people pay attention to these messages to ensure that all of us are playing our part in preventing transmission of Covid-19 in our communities."

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today moved New Zealand’s alert level to three. In 48 hours that level will move to level four.

"It is our best chance to slow the virus and to save lives," Ms Ardern said.

People can find more information at the Government's Covid-19 website.