Coronavirus: One new positive community case, three new MIQ cases

There is one new case of COVID-19 in the community on Friday and three new cases in managed isolation, the Ministry of Health says.

In a statement released on Friday, the Ministry said the new case (which is known as case G) is linked to the existing Auckland February cases.

"The case is a household contact of cases D, E and F which we announced on Wednesday. This person had previously returned a negative test, taken on Monday 15 February, and has been isolating at home and is in the process of transferring to the Auckland quarantine facility."

Cases D, E and F are from the second family household group. Case D is a classmate of one of the infected trio from Sunday (case A).

There is one more member in case D's household who has returned a negative COVID-19 test. Health authorities are transferring them to the Auckland quarantine facility as a precautionary measure.

Since the last update, genome sequencing has also come back for case F. It shows a clear link to other cases in the cluster.

Of the cases confirmed in MIQ, one arrived in New Zealand on February 13 from India, via the United Arab Emirates. They were staying in MIQ in Auckland and tested positive for the virus on day five.

The second case came from the Netherlands via Singapore, arriving on February 16. They tested positive during routine testing on day one in MIQ in an Auckland facility.

New Zealand's third MIQ case flew into the country on February 12 from Indonesia via Singapore. They tested positive around day 3 in a Christchurch MIQ facility, but are now classified as historical and deemed not infectious.

No previously reported cases have recorded, bringing the country's active case total to 50. Our total number of confirmed cases is 1992.

Contact tracing

The Ministry reported that, apart from the known cases, all close contacts associated with the cases households, school and travel group to New Plymouth have returned negative results.

"Contact tracing has identified 128 close contacts associated with all cases in this cluster, aside from the positive cases which have previously been reported. Of these, 112 of the close contacts have returned a negative test result. We are awaiting test results for 16 people." 

Of those 16, seven are from a medical clinic related to case c which is considered a low-risk exposure event. The other nine are workplace contacts of case E.

They are all in isolation as a precaution.

So far health authorities have identified 31 close contacts and 1476 casual plus contacts at Papatoetoe High School. 

Of the 31 school close contacts, 30 have returned negative results, with one positive result (Case D).

There are still 63 COVID-19 test results to come back for casual plus contact. All but one (case E) to have come back so far have tested negative.

"We do remind all students and staff at the school to please stay home and have a test if they haven’t already," the Ministry said. "School is expected to return on Monday 22 February. Close contacts at the school will not return until they have been advised by public health that they can."

From the testing of close contacts at LSG Sky Chef, all nine have returned negative tests. 

So far 384 people in the wider work environment have tested negative while there are still 59 results pending.


Authorities are continuing to investigate scenarios for potential infection sources.

While no direct match has been found, genome sequencing did reveal a possible genomic similarity involving a guest who stayed at the Four Points by Sheraton managed isolation facility in Auckland.

Health officials are now attempting to contact around 265 guests and their household contacts who were at the facility in late December.

"176 have now been contacted. Of these, 149 have been assessed and cleared; nine are now overseas; 18 are being followed up by public health units for further investigation. Of the 89 people to be contacted, finding services have provided details for 44 and they are being contacted. Finding services are actively pursuing details for the remaining 45 individuals."

The Ministry said ESR and health officials do not consider this a likely source of infection at this stage.