Coronavirus pandemic: New Zealand confirms two new cases

Officials have confirmed New Zealand has two new cases of the coronavirus COVID-19, bringing the total to eight.

Speaking to reporters on Sunday afternoon, Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield confirmed the latest cases are both foreign nationals - from Australia and Denmark.

Dr Bloomfield said both those people are in isolation.

"A man in his 60s visiting from Australia prior to flying to New Zealand, has now been confirmed as positive by the Australian authorities," the Ministry of Health said in a statement.

The ministry said the man arrived in Wellington at 12:05am on Saturday from Brisbane on Air New Zealand flight 828 and was informed later that morning of his positive result.

He requires no further medical treatment and is self-isolating in Wellington.

"Public Health staff will be checking with their Australian counterparts about what advice was provided to the man prior to travelling," the ministry said.

The eighth case, a Danish woman in her 30s, arrived in Auckland via Doha on QR 920 on Tuesday before flying from Auckland to Christchurch on Jetstar flight JQ225 arriving at 8am.

She was then hospitalised in Queenstown. The ministry said she is recovering well and in the process of being discharged and from there will enter isolation.

Dr Bloomfield said on Sunday that contact tracing has begun.

"We are working to scale up our response to support the increasing number we know will be in self-isolation.

"This will ensure that they are supported; that they are monitored appropriately while in self-isolation.

"The evidence to date is that self-isolation is playing an important role in our control efforts."

Meanwhile, three people on board a cruise ship berthed at Akaroa in Canterbury have been tested for the virus, Dr Bloomfield said. Those test results are pending.