Coronavirus: Eighteen new cases detected in New Zealand isolation facilities

New Zealand has recorded 18 new cases of COVID-19 in isolation facilities over the last two days, the Ministry of Health says.

Two are considered historical and are not infectious. There are no new cases in the community.

Of the 18 new cases, four departed from Malaysia, two departed from South Africa, two departed the United Kingdom, three left the United States, two departed from Russia and two left India. There are individual cases from Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, and Italy.

Four previously recorded cases have now recovered, meaning New Zealand has 76 active cases. Overall, we have had 1890 confirmed cases. More than 1,457,000 tests have been processed by laboratories to date. 

"On Wednesday 4,519 tests were processed and [on Thursday] there were 4,358 tests processed. The seven-day rolling average up to yesterday is 3,653 tests processed," the ministry says.

"Over the summer break the Ministry of Health continues to encourage people with any COVID-19 symptoms to get assessed for testing by contacting their doctor or calling Healthline. Healthline is free and available 24/7. Medical professionals are best placed to assess whether a test is needed."

From 11:59pm on Friday, travellers from the US and UK will have to show a negative COVID-19 test before landing in New Zealand.

"This measure is in addition to travellers arriving from the United States and the United Kingdom requiring a COVID-19 test on day 0/1 and needing to stay in their rooms until a test result is available, i.e. testing within 24 hours of arriving into managed isolation," the ministry says.

"Pre-departure testing will soon be expanded to include all countries excluding Australia, Antarctica and some Pacific Island nations. These additional requirements have been put in place to further strengthen our border, to protect New Zealand from COVID-19 and new emerging variants."