Live: 61 new Covid-19 cases

Director of Public Health Dr Caroline McElnay has revealed there are 47 new confirmed cases and 14 probable cases, bringing the New Zealand total to 708.

Dr McElnay said there were 14 people with Covid-19 in hospital, including two in intensive care who were in a stable condition.

There were no new deaths.

Dr McElnay said there was still a strong link to overseas travel, with just over half of the cases reporting overseas travel.

About 1% of cases were due to community transmission.

A new case definition for testing would be issued today, she said.

"But we do rely on clinical judgement at all times."

Anyone with respiratory symptoms consistent with Covid-19 should now be tested regardless of whether they had been overseas or in close contact with a confirmed case.

About 1843 tests per day were being conducted in the past week, with daily capacity at about 3700 tests.

Source: NZ Herald
Source: NZ Herald

More testing capacity is being added, she said.

A number of clusters, or outbreaks from connected cases, have sprung up, McElnay said.

She said in those clusters, close contacts needed to be identified so get better control of the spread of the virus.

Civil Defence's Stuart-Black thanked Māori for their contribution to helping fight the Covid-19 outbreak.

"They are connected across all levels of the Covid-19 response."

She said the first charter flight taking New Zealanders returning from overseas from Auckland to their respective homes around the country had left, and there would be more flights in coming days.

Those people are required to self-isolate.

The national state of emergency was extended yesterday, and Stuart-Black said that was necessary because each time it is declared, it expires after seven days.

The expiry was a safeguard, and states of national emergency can be extended as needed.

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