Coronavirus: Details of two Auckland clusters revealed, new cluster announced

New details have been revealed about two COVID-19 clusters in Auckland while the Ministry of Health has also announced a new significant cluster in Christchurch.

Prior to Saturday, New Zealand had 12 significant clusters, those being a group of COVID-19 cases that are linked together as the infected individuals have been at the same place or event together. They each have 10 or more cases, which includes both those which are confirmed and probable. 

However, on Saturday, the Director of Public Health Dr Caroline McElnay announced a 13th cluster at the George Manning retirement home in Christchurch. That cluster has 14 cases, a mixture of residents and staff, but is believed to be "well-contained".

Dr McElnay also provided new details about two clusters that have previously been reported in Auckland but for which, until now, there's been little specific information provided about.

"The first is an outbreak in the community which has subsequently resulted in cases at a Spectrum facility, providing daycare to individuals with intellectual disability," Dr McElnay.

"The second cluster is linked to a private party to celebrate an event in Auckland." 

The party, which happened prior to the lockdown, has 35 cases linked to it.

"What we are seeing with these private functions… is that social events like weddings, like parties… really act as a mixing bowl for this infection to be spread," she said.

New Zealand's clusters are:

  • Bluff wedding: 85 cases
  • Marist College, Auckland: 85 cases
  • Matamata bar: 70 cases
  • Party in Auckland:  35 cases
  • World Hereford Conference, Queenstown: 33 cases
  • Rosewood rest home, Christchurch: 30 cases
  • Workplace, Auckland: 28 cases
  • Wellington group which travelled to the United States: 16
  • Ruby Princess cruise ship: 16
  • Auckland group which travelled to the United States: 15
  • George Manning retirement village: 14
  • A rest home in Waikato: 14
  • A wedding in Wellington: 13

The country now has a total of 1312 cases of COVID-19, with four people having died of the illness. Fifteen people are in hospital, with four in ICU. So far, 58,746 tests have been undertaken.

Worldwide, there have been more than 102,000 confirmed deaths due to the disease, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus which emerged from China late last year, and 1.7 million confirmed infections.

New Zealand's current lockdown restrictions are in place until April 22. The Government will announce on April 20 if they're to be extended. 

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