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Thursday, May 23, 2024

NZ free of community COVID-19 cases

There are no active community cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand today, with patients from the recent outbreak reportedly fully recovered from the virus, the nation’s Health Minister has announced. 

“This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems that have been developed and strengthened since our first wave of COVID-19 have worked very effectively to chase down the virus, isolate it, and eliminate it,” said Minister Chris Hipkins.

“It’s really good news, but as always we cannot sit back. Constant vigilance and team work, with everyone playing their part to ensure we stay on top of the virus, needs to be our new normal for some time to come.” 

Since August 11, there have been 186 community cases of COVID-19 reported – 179 people linked to an Auckland August cluster, six people linked to a group of Christchurch returned travellers, and a staff member from a managed isolation facility. 

“The scale and speed of the response ensured the virus was not allowed to spread unimpeded, as people worked around the clock to rapidly identify and isolate cases as they emerged in our communities, then trace and test their contacts,” Mr Hipkins said. 

“The Auckland August cluster has been our largest by some margin, and it has taken considerable effort from across the health system, and from all New Zealanders, to contain this outbreak so quickly.” 

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