Covid 19 delta outbreak: Auckland’s alert level change shaken by peak Covid cases

September 29, 2021 45 new cases of COVID in the community are “alarming” today, including 12 unrelated “mystery” cases. All of today’s cases are from Auckland.

Aucklanders is facing panic over the number of COVID positive cases today which could indicate that yesterday’s 45 cases are an anomaly or a warning of what’s to come.

Experts say it’s too early to know if yesterday’s announcement – far from Tuesday’s eight positive cases – for Auckland to move to Alert Level 2 to be decided by cabinet on Monday is a disaster.

However, their initial assessments are not optimistic.

“Going to level 2 will add fuel to the fire,” said model maker Professor Michael Planck of the University of Canterbury.

Will Aucklanders see Alert Level 2 by next week?  photo / Michael Craig
Will Aucklanders see Alert Level 2 by next week? photo / Michael Craig

Planck, speaking to Heather du Plessis-Allen of Newstalk ZB yesterday, noted the legitimate risk of cases climbing “very, very quickly” when Auckland exits Alert Level 3 next week.

He acknowledged that more data was needed to decide whether yesterday’s cases – 12 of which were unrelated – indicated widespread transmission in the community.

“It could be that this number will drop in the next few days, or it could be the start of an uptrend.”

University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker said positive cases were expected to arise because community transmission had not been eradicated before Auckland left Alert Level 4.

“I spoke about this long tail issue last week, which indicated that we have not been able to stop the ongoing transmission,” Baker said.

“This means that there are cases in the community that essentially moving from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3 below allows for greater transmission to the whole community from these cases. remaining. “

Professor Epidemiologist Michael Baker of the University of Otago.  photo / supplies
Professor Epidemiologist Michael Baker of the University of Otago. photo / supplies

Baker said it takes about a week to feel the change in alert levels as there are still people infected in the community.

“When you change the alert levels, you always look back in seven to ten days,” he said.

“At alert level 3, people start to be exposed, then you have an incubation period of five days and then you have to be sick enough to be tested, then you have a night test, a week later, we finally see that [number].

“We can see that the numbers continue to increase from now on.

“I wouldn’t treat him like a blip, but that’s the way we’re doing right now. I would like someone to prove me wrong.

He added that while this is still not a trend, there is a possibility of increased alert levels.

At yesterday’s press conference, Chief Public Health Officer Dr Ashley Bloomfield said a day with a large number of cases was expected given known households and close contacts of existing cases .

Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield.  Photo / Mark Mitchell
Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. Photo / Mark Mitchell

He said of the 12 unrelated cases, six had possible links to existing infections and were under investigation.

COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said the number of cases was “worrying” and said no one would celebrate.

However, it was important to put this in context, knowing that many of the cases were from large houses.

“We still have to keep our cool here,” he said.

“We expect some jerks to occur from time to time. “

Meanwhile, concerns remain about the extent to which Covid-19 has taken hold in gang and homeless communities.

To date, three different gangs had witnessed the Covid infection.

Bloomfield said some people in transitional or emergency housing also caught the virus, but assured the public that cooperation with providers was high.

Pacific health director Gerardine Clifford-Lidstone said yesterday during the selection committee’s online briefing on the government’s response to COVID-19.

“If we think about the current epidemic, what it looks like in a gang environment and homeless people, these are people who are less likely to trust the health care system,” Clifford-Lidstone said.

“Finding people within these communities who can promote vaccines will be very important. These are things that we have started to work on.

Last week it was revealed that the Hell’s Angels had contracted COVID-19, the third gang in Auckland to be affected by the virus.

After testing positive, a member of the Black Power patch became infected and spread it to children living in their home outside of Kaiaua in the Hauraki Plains.

Where to get vaccinated in Auckland – without reservation

Bloomfield also confirmed that a volunteer at a pop-up vaccination station tested positive for COVID-19 after sharing morning tea with other volunteers.

He said a “small number” of people who attended the morning tea were treated as close contacts and were isolated and tested.

Bloomfield said a man admitted to Waitakere hospital on Saturday, September 25, recorded another positive test on Tuesday. Some staff were forced to stand up and some patients were followed.

It comes after a police officer and a young sailor allegedly violated Auckland’s alert level limit without exemption in two separate incidents.

The Herald revealed that the policeman was Inspector Regan Tamihare, the Maori official of the Manukau County Police District.

Regan Tamihere, the police officer at the center of an investigation into alleged violations of Auckland's alert level limits.  photo / supplies
Regan Tamihere, the police officer at the center of an investigation into alleged violations of Auckland’s alert level limits. photo / supplies

Sources told the Herald he was driving an unmarked, uniformed police car when he was pulled over at the border with passengers.

These passengers were IVI contacts whom he knows from his post with the police.

A source said TODAY he was doing these contacts “a favor”.

A source said Tamihere was stopped by police stationed at the southern border – but they allegedly allowed it because she insisted they couldn’t say no to her.

Tamihare told him that he could cross the border because he was an essential worker.

Vaccination efforts to reach New Zealand's goal of having at least 90 percent of the population vaccinated are underway across the country.  Photo / Michael Cunningham
Vaccination efforts to meet New Zealand’s goal of having at least 90 percent of the population vaccinated are underway across the country. Photo / Michael Cunningham

It was later revealed that the Navy was investigating how a fully vaccinated young sailor traveled to attend the funeral of a close family member without a travel exemption from the Department of Health.

The New Zealand Defense Force said: “The sailor has been instructed to self-isolate at his rural property in Hawke’s Bay and undergo a COVID test.”

“RNZN is investigating the alleged border violation and surrounding circumstances. The regional health authority has been informed.

Deputy Chief of the Navy Commodore Melissa Ross said: “An investigation is currently underway into how the sailor successfully crossed the border without Health Department waivers and travel conditions required.

“While we recognize that this young sailor suffered a significant loss and, like many other New Zealanders in the same predicament, wanted to support Wenau, he must comply with the border restrictions in place and ensure the safety of New Zealand. Zealand. You should play your part to keep it.

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