Record Testing As Northern Region DHBs Support Preparations For Move To Alert Level 2
More than 73,000 tests for COVID-19 have been processed at labs across the Northern Region DHBs (Northland, Waitematā, Auckland and Counties Manukau).
The highest number of tests received in a single day occurred yesterday (3,400) as preparations continue for a move to Alert Level 2.
The 73,188 tests include people who have COVID-19 symptoms or known contact with a confirmed or probable case; those who meet the case definition.
The total also includes targeted community testing of people without symptoms to help provide assurance that there are not undetected cases of COVID-19 in the community and that it is safe to move down the alert levels.
Targeted community testing of people is voluntary and is part of the Ministry of Health’s ongoing surveillance against COVID-19.
In Auckland, the Waitematā, Auckland, and Counties Manukau DHBs are offering this testing to people in the following categories:
· essential workers at Māori health providers and Pacific health providers,
· healthcare workers in hospitals, laboratories and in the community,
· people working at Auckland Airport including aircrew,
· staff at hotels being used for mandatory isolation,
· police and ambulance staff, and
· people associated with known clusters e.g. Marist College and aged residential care facilities.
Northland DHB has worked with nine Māori health providers to deliver mobile testing clinics from Kaipara to the Far North, enabling greater access for those living in remote communities.
NRHCC Lead (and Waitematā DHB CEO) Dr Dale Bramley said the record test numbers reflect a whole of community commitment to combating COVID-19.
“I want to acknowledge and thank our frontline people who have helped get us to this point: our Community Based Testing Centres, General Practices and hospital workers who have been doing the swabbing; and the staff at our laboratories who have worked long hours to process the tests.
“It’s been great to see our communities accessing testing in such high numbers, playing their part to ensure there are no cases of COVID-19 going undetected.
“It’s also been really pleasing to see the uptake of testing by our DHB staff. More than 3,300 staff have been tested so far. This provides additional reassurance our hospitals remain safe places to visit.
“As we approach Alert Level 2 and continue to increase the healthcare services provided by our Northern Region DHBs we can be confident we will be ready to test, contact trace and manage any new cases should they arise.”
As at 8 May:
· 3,362 staff have been tested in the Northern Region DHBs
· 255 staff have been tested at Northland DHB
· 1,044 staff have been tested at Waitematā DHB
· 1,169 staff have been tested at Auckland DHB
· 894 staff have been tested at Counties-Manukau DHB