As it happened: Latest on COVID-19 community outbreak - Sunday, September 5

Officials on Sunday reported 20 further daily community infections of COVID-19, all in Auckland.

But we appear to be breaking the virus' transmission - with the weekend's case numbers tracking down from recent days.

Cases in the current outbreak stand at 801, with 784 in Auckland and 17 in Wellington.

What you need to know:

  • Twenty new community cases were also reported on Sunday
  • Thirty-eight people are in hospital, six of whom are in intensive care
  • Auckland remains at alert level 4 while the rest of New Zealand is at level 3. Officials will provide an update on lockdown settings on Monday
  • Click here for the latest locations of interest - a map can also be found here.

These live updates have finished.

2:35pm - More than three million COVID-19 tests have been taken in New Zealand.

In the past 24 hours, there's been a total 9238 tests. In Auckland alone there were 2592.

The rolling average of daily tests over the past seven days is 15,148 and the total number of tests taken throughout the country is 3,057,343.

2:05pm - There are also four new cases of COVID-19 found at the border.

Details of these are: 

  • Arrived August 23 direct from the United States. Tested positive on day 12 routine testing
  • Arrived August 28 from Afghanistan via Australia. Tested positive on day 6 routine testing
  • Arrived August 15 from Philippines via Australia. Tested positive on day 2 routine testing
  • The fourth case's travel history is to be confirmed. They tested positive on day 1 routine testing.

1:58pm - As of 10am, there were 138 COVID-19 locations of interest, the Ministry of Health says. 

1:47pm - The Ministry of Health says it's identified 38,120 contacts of COVID-19 cases in the latest outbreak.

Of those, 86 percent have been reached by contact tracers and 90 percent have received at least on COVID-19 test result.

1:37pm - An update on New Zealand's COVID-19 vaccine rollout:

  • Vaccines administered to date (total): 3,850,611 - 1st doses: 2,537,434; 2nd doses -  1,313,176
  • Vaccines administered on Sunday (total): 76,812; 1st doses - 54,408; 2nd doses - 22,404
  • Māori: 1st doses - 232,577; 2nd doses - 116,490
  • Pacific Peoples: 1st doses - 149,536; 2nd doses - 79,510.

1:32pm - Across the Tasman, Australia's New South Wales state reported 1485 new community COVID-19 infections and three further deaths on Sunday, as authorities struggle to contain its growing Delta outbreak.

There are 1030 people in NSW hospitals, with 175 of them in an intensive care unit, the New South Wales health ministry said.

1:29pm - To further break down COVID-19 testing numbers: Of the 9238 swabs conducted in the past 24 hours, 2592 were in Auckland.

1:25pm - Dr Bloomfield says the Ministry of Health is this afternoon working on advice it will provide to Cabinet about alert level restrictions. Cabinet is meeting on Monday to discuss whether regions outside of Auckland can further drop down alert levels.

1:20pm - Deputy PM Grant Roberston agrees with Dr Bloomfield that COVID-19 testing numbers need to stay high.

1:17pm - A breakdown of today's figures from the Ministry of Health is below:

As it happened: Latest on COVID-19 community outbreak - Sunday, September 5
Photo credit: Ministry of Health

1:15pm - Dr Bloomfield says it's "really clear" the outbreak is heading in the right direction, but "we can't let even one case slip the net here".

1:11pm - Dr Bloomfield says 96 COVID-19 cases infected during this outbreak have recovered from the virus.

1:09pm - Dr Bloomfield is thanking COVID-19 patients who are currently in quarantine facilities for keeping the community and their whānau safe from the virus.

1:08pm - Dr Bloomfield says it's crucial good levels of COVID-19 testing is maintained to stamp out the virus. He says anyone with cold and flu symptoms - especially in Auckland - should get tested.

There were 9238 COVID-19 tests processed in the past 24 hours.

1:04pm - There are 20 new community cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand today, all in Auckland, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield says. There are 38 COVID-19 patients in hospital - six of whom are in intensive care.

12:55pm - As we wait for the the Director-General of Health and Deputy Prime Minister, here's a recap of the latest COVID-19 developments in New Zealand:

  • Twenty cases were reported on Saturday
  • A woman in her 90s died with the virus
  • More than 350 of the outbreak's cases are now linked to the Māngere church sub cluster.

12:40pm - We're about 20 minutes away from the COVID-19 press conference, being fronted today by Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield and Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson. You can watch it live on Three and in the video above.

12:30pm - A Picton backpackers accommodation has told guests they must be vaccinated against COVID-19 to be able to stay. Read more here.

12:15pm - Government agencies are urging Kiwis to "trust others are doing the right thing" even if they're not wearing a mask, revealing people with disabilities and health conditions are being harangued in public for going out without one on.

The Ministry of Health has told Newshub members of this community, many of whom are exempt from wearing a mask at any COVID-19 alert level because they are unable to for health reasons, are being "confronted and harassed" when accessing essential services.

12pm - There are two deadly viruses working their way around the world right now. One is COVID-19, and the other is misinformation.

RNZ and AAP FactCheck's Nik Dirga explains COVID-19 misinformation and why it will endure longer than the pandemic itself. Read the analysis here.

11:45am - With Tāmaki Makaurau stuck in COVID-19 alert level 4 lockdown until at least September 14 and the rest of the country languishing in the more fast-food-friendly, but ultimately still cabin-fever-inducing alert level 3, Aotearoa is feeling the lockdown blues.

With that in mind, Newshub has asked a bunch of well-loved Kiwis how they're staying sane while staying at home, in the hopes of providing a touch of inspiration, a delicious-sounding smoothie recipe - thanks, Melodownz - and a reminder that we really all are in the same boat.

Digital entertainment editor Monika Barton reports.

11:30am - The Ministry of Health on Sunday has added an additional COVID-19 locations of interest. They include Pak'nSave Westgate and Countdown Northcote.

As it happened: Latest on COVID-19 community outbreak - Sunday, September 5
Photo credit: Ministry of Health

11:20am - A slow but steady COVID-19 vaccine rollout could help New Zealand in the long run epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker told RNZ on Sunday. Read more here.

11:15am - Click here for a wrap of what happened on Saturday - day 18 of New Zealand's COVID-19 lockdown.