New Zealand

Quarantine or 'managed isolation' compulsory for all arrivals into NZ, PM says

Jacinda Ardern said the new arrivals will need to go into either quarantine or "managed isolation" at an approved facility for a minimum of 14 days.

"Our borders are our biggest risk," she said.

She said even one person slipping through the cracks and bringing the virus in could see an explosion of cases.

Ardern said everyone arriving will go into a managed facility that is provided by the government."

She said the tighter controls could not have been done in the beginning but "we can and are now".

Managed transit allows stranded New Zealand travellers to get home

“There are millions of people around the world stranded by COVID-19 and we are continuing to do our part to help them get home,” Mr Peters said. “Accordingly, Cabinet agreed yesterday that New Zealand would seek reciprocal transit arrangements with a number of countries to enable our citizens to transit each other’s airports.

“One barrier to New Zealanders getting home at present is the transit restrictions imposed by a number of countries. We continue to seek assistance from these countries to enable New Zealanders to transit through their airports in order to come home.

New Zealand Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID

Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will:

Coronavirus: First death in New Zealand from Covid-19

Dr Bloomfield said New Zealand had its first death after a woman who was initially diagnosed with influenza died.

The woman who died was in her 70s, from the West Coast. She died this morning.

"Understandably the family would like to take their time to grieve," Dr Bloomfield said.

"This latest sad news reinforces our move to alert level four."

He said 21 DHB staff who treated the woman when her diagnosis was thought to be influenza had been asked to self-isolate.

Group without lockdown accommodation concerned for older members

When the Ta'ofi Ke Ma'u performance troupe left their home island of Wallis in the Pacific they had no idea that what was going to be a nine-day trip would become a trip with no definite end date in sight.

The group of 25, who travelled to Auckland to perform at the Pasifika Festival on 13 March, have been stranded here since Covid-19 restrictions on gatherings forced its cancellation.

"We were so excited to come here, and so most of us it was the first trip outside of Noumea," said Niuola Petelo, 64, the group's president.

New Zealand goes into lockdown

Earlier today, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed the country would go into alert level four - and a full national lockdown - in the next 48 hours.

All of Government Controller John Ombler addressed a media conference, along with other key personnel involved in the response.

Ombler said it was clear there would be significant disruption to everyone, "but the alternative would be far worse".

"I'm confident that this all of government leadership is the best way to support the community.

"These are restrictions to save lives."

Coronavirus: 36 new cases of Covid-19 in NZ, bringing total to 102

More than half are directly related to overseas travel, Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said.

"So these are people who have returned to New Zealand recently and have become symptomatic, been tested and confirmed as cases of Covid-19. Most of the remaining cases are close contacts of a previously confirmed case or are associated with an event where there were confirmed cases already, for example, the Hereford Cattle conference in Queenstown."

Director-General of Health announces 14 new Covid-19 cases in NZ

The new cases bring the total to 53 confirmed, and four probable.

The locations of the new cases are; four in Wellington, one in Taranaki, three in Auckland, one in Waikato, one in Taupō, one in Manawatu and two in Nelson.

Three of NZ's confirmed cases are in hospital and all are a stable condition.

One man in his 60s is in Lakes District Hospital in Queenstown, a woman is in hospital in Nelson and another person is in North Shore Hospital.

Eight new cases of coronavirus in NZ, Health Ministry confirms

It brings the total of confirmed cases in New Zealand to 20.

Speaking at the latest media conference, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said there are four new cases in Auckland, one in Christchurch, two in Waikato and one in Invercargill.

Some of the new cases have come from Europe, Australia and the USA.

He said details for each of these cases, including flight information, will be revealed on the Ministry of Health website "in the near future".

Coronavirus pandemic: New Zealand confirms two new cases

Speaking to reporters on Sunday afternoon, Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield confirmed the latest cases are both foreign nationals - from Australia and Denmark.

Dr Bloomfield said both those people are in isolation.

"A man in his 60s visiting from Australia prior to flying to New Zealand, has now been confirmed as positive by the Australian authorities," the Ministry of Health said in a statement.