Chris Hipkins responds after vaccination volunteer becomes infected with COVID-19

COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins has responded after a volunteer at a pop-up vaccination drive-through tested positive after mixing with other volunteers.

"Any person testing positive for COVID-19, particularly when they picked that up in the community, is of concern," he said at Wednesday's press conference.

"Our vaccination centres have very strict prevention and control measures in  place for everybody who is there, whether it's people who are paid to be there, people who are volunteering or people who are coming forward to be vaccinated."

Hipkins then asked Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield if he had anything to add.

"That event was risk-assessed by the public health unit and there were just a small number of people that that volunteer who tested positive had eaten with at morning tea or lunch," Dr Bloomfield replied.

"They were treated as close contacts and are in isolation and have been tested but those were the only people who were judged to be in any way close contacts and requiring follow-up."

There were 45 new cases of coronavirus on Wednesday,  33 of which are known to be household or other close contacts of existing cases.

The Ministry of Health says now Auckland is at alert level 3, some of these people may have been working in essential or permitted businesses during their infectious periods.

"This emphasises the importance of everyone in Auckland continuing to abide by alert level 3 measures - including mask-wearing and staying in your bubble," a spokesperson says.

Hipkins acknowledged this spike is a "sobering number", but says it's not necessarily about how many cases there are, but the "nature and characteristics" of the infections.

"We do expect there will be blips. We have seen blips already in this outbreak, where we have had a bad day… I would encourage people not to read too much into it at this point," Hipkins said.

"We need to hold our nerve here."