Coronavirus: Two Waitematā DHB staff test positive for COVID-19

Two staff members at Waitematā District Health Board have contracted coronavirus due to community transmission, the DHB confirmed in a statement.

It's believed the healthcare workers are linked to the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship sub-cluster, which has recorded 33 cases. The DHB reiterated the staff members did not contract the virus at work.

One had been on leave before becoming infectious and has not returned to the DHB since. The other has been off work since late August and is part of a small, non-patient-facing team, the members of which have all returned negative results.

Seventeen staff who had contact with one or both of the healthcare workers before their diagnoses were stood down early last week as a precaution. All have tested negative for the virus.

The 17 staff will remain in isolation and undergo a second swab at around day 12 from the date of potential exposure, as per the Ministry of Health's testing guidelines. 

If the staff return two negative tests and remain asymptomatic after day 14 of their isolation period, they will be cleared to return to work.

"Waitematā DHB has robust processes in place to cater for these kinds of scenarios and assures the public that our hospitals are safe," the DHB said in the statement.

Waitematā DHB, a district including North Shore and Waitākere Hospitals, is in close contact with the workers and wishes them a speedy recovery.

Two new community cases of COVID-19 were recorded on Saturday, both of which are associated with the new bereavement events' sub-cluster epidemiologically linked to the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship. 

Seven Waitākere Hospital nurses and at least three close contacts contracted the virus in May after residents of St Margaret's Rest Home and Hospital, one of the largest clusters in the country, were transferred to the hospital.