Two new cases; pause possible at some vaccine centres

There are two new cases of Covid-19 in in managed isolation facilities today and no cases in the community.

The seven-day rolling average of new cases detected at the border is two.

Two patients in Auckland's Middlemore Hospital remain in a stable condition, the Ministry of Health said in today's update.

Director-general of Health Ashley Bloomfield said 891,702 vaccine doses had been administered and yesterday more than 21,000 doses were administered.

The country remained more than 7 percent ahead of the rollout plan.

Based on data, the Auckland region is running behind rollout schedule, but the region has delivered over a third of the entire country's doses.

No DHBs had stopped their rollouts due to low supplies, Bloomfield said. They were working with the ministry to ensure they could continue to vaccinate as per their schedules.

The rollout could slow down, and some centres may have to pause, but they were balancing their rollout based on supply, Bloomfield said.

For group 1, 54,000 had first dose and 48,000 second dose.

In group 2, 332,000 had first dose and 230,000 second. In group 3, 145,000 had first does and 34,000 second and in group 4 35,000 had first dose and 4500 second.

Bloomfield said he was pleased at how the vaccine had got to people.

As the vaccine can be stored at 2C-8C, there was no need now to call people in to use up vaccines.

Now was a good time for people to update contact details with a GP ahead of the general rollout, he said.

The latest data around willingness showed 80 percent over 16 years were likely to get a vaccine or had been vaccinated, up from 69 percent in March. For Māori it was up to 75 percent and Pasifika 78 percent.

Director-general of Health Ashley Bloomfield. Photo: Getty
Director-general of Health Ashley Bloomfield. Photo: Getty
It was fantastic to see this high level of willingness, Bloomfield said.

Around 12 percent remained unwilling and 8 percent unsure, which remained the challenge, Bloomfield said.

There was no intention to make people take the vaccine, it was not mandatory, but they expected to see growing acceptance as the rollout expanded and it became the social norm.

On vaccination rates, the higher the proportion of people who were vaccinated, up around 90-95 percent, meant there would be fewer hospitalisations and fewer less deaths in case of community transmission. That meant if 20 percent of the population did not get vaccinated, as per the hesitancy, other measures such as scanning and masks could need to continue.

On the Victoria situation, there were five cases reported overnight and all of these were linked to existing outbreaks, an ongoing "trickle of cases" coming through.

There would be an update this afternoon on the quarantine-free travel pause with Victoria, Bloomfield said.

Global Covid-19 cases were declining, about half of the peak in April of over 800,000 cases, he said.

However, there could be unreported cases in places, international authorities warned.

The United Kingdom, despite their successful vaccination programme, was starting to see an upswing in cases and most cases were the Delta variant.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern would have more to say on the rollout, particularly around group 4 - the general population - rollout, tomorrow.



Ashley Bloomfield's numbers seem a bit high for a comparison with the UK. If they are having 7000 infections a day out of 70m people that is equivalent to about 500 a day here if it was here and spreading in the exactly same way as it is in the UK.
Secondly, distribution is important and we all know that the virus will be present in concentrations in certain deeply populated places. Denser populations mean more likelihood of greater spread. It will not be evenly spread and it will not be so prevalent in rural or sparsely populated areas.
Thirdly we do not have millions of people or even thousands or even hundreds of people pouring into NZ every day which is the only way we are going to get even close to being as infected as the UK is.
Fourthly, the virus is not in the population in NZ.
There is not any need to be afraid.

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