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Five New Cases Of Covid-19 Confirmed In Hawke's Bay Update 4/4

The Ministry of Health today reported five Covid-19 cases in Hawke’s Bay – one probable and four confirmed. This takes the total for the region to 29.

Probable cases, are cases that are a close contact of a previously confirmed case that meets the clinical criteria of having COVID-19.

Medical Officer of Health Dr Nick Jones said three of today’s confirmed cases were linked to overseas travel. A fourth confirmed case had close contact with another confirmed case during domestic travel. All four people were in self-isolation at home and had followed all the appropriate precautions.

Dr Jones said the probable case was a resident at Gladys Mary Care Home, Napier. The rest home now had three confirmed cases and three probable cases.

Yesterday the Ministry of Health said cases linked to the Ruby Princess cruise ship in Hawke’s Bay made it one of ten ‘clusters’ nationwide. Today’s probable case is also linked to the Ruby Princess.

Dr Jones said prior to the ship being granted clearance to disembark in Napier, COVID-19 was ruled out on unwell passengers.

“The ship declared it had several passengers unwell with Influenza A (confirmed through the ship’s onboard testing), but one passenger that did not return an Influenza A result. Therefore, the ship’s Master was advised that if COVID-19 could not be excluded, the vessel would not be granted clearance to disembark in Napier,” said Dr Jones.

“At the request of the ship’s doctor, the Medical Officer of Health arranged for immediate COVID-19 testing to be undertaken by public health officials while the ship was still in Wellington, and all returned negative results.”

Dr Jones said the Medical Officer of Health was also advised by Government officials that the new border closure introduced at that time did not apply to vessels already within New Zealand waters.

“The ship was therefore cleared for disembarkation in Napier, but unwell passengers were to remain on board the vessel,” he said.

Symptoms of Covid-19 include a cough, fever, sneezing or a runny nose. Anyone with these symptoms are advised to call their GP or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 to be assessed. People need an appointment via their GP or Healthline to be swabbed at a Community-Based Assessment Centre.

Today’s Ministry of Health national case updates can be found here.

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