Student parties bring warning

Litter lies strewn in Castle St yesterday, the debris of a night of revelry in the student...
Litter lies strewn in Castle St yesterday, the debris of a night of revelry in the student quarter. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH
Large crowds of students partying in Castle St on Saturday brought a warning to beware the spectre of Long Covid.

A police spokeswoman confirmed police attended a large student party in Castle St about 10pm. She could say they made no arrests, but had no further information.

Restrictions on outdoor gatherings were dropped this weekend.

University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker said advice for young people at the moment was a bit mixed, but the prospect of Long Covid should have them erring on the side of caution.

There was a perception that younger people who were vaccinated and boosted would likely only have mild symptoms, if any in the event of an infection.

Current studies of Long Covid effects did not show a strong relationship with the age of the patient.

"I think no-one would say at the moment that anyone’s in the clear with this infection, and long covid remains a big concern for everyone.

"That’s why the advice is still very much not to get this infection, to avoid it."

The best advice remained to get vaccinated and boosted and to wear a mask when indoors.

Meanwhile, 772 new community cases of Covid-19 were recorded in the Southern District Health Board area yesterday, and 1101 new cases on Saturday.

Nationally there were 14,175 cases on Saturday and 10,239 yesterday.

The South also recorded the death of one person with Covid-19, one of four reported yesterday.

Saturday saw 20 deaths reported, the largest daily number of Covid-19 related deaths on one day to date.

The weekend’s deaths took the total number of publicly reported deaths to 258, while the seven day rolling average was 12.

There are 28 people with Covid-19 in Southern District Health Board hospitals at present.

Nationally there was 848 people with Covid-19 in hospital and 58 in ICU or HDU.



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