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The Ministry of Health has given media an update on the Christchurch managed isolation cases.
Since last night when the Ministry announced a second community case involving a worker at the Sudima Christchurch Airport facility where international mariners are currently in managed isolation and quarantine.
This individual was recently tested as part of routine testing for staff in the facility and returned a negative test.
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As a result of this week’s first case, other staff members working at the isolation facility who worked relevant shifts were contacted and tested as appropriate. This was when the second case, who was a close workplace contact, was detected by the Ministry.
They remain asymptomatic.
A NZ COVID Tracer App push notification was sent this morning to people who scanned at the same time as the person who briefly visited The Chemist Warehouse at the South City Mall between 3:52 pm and 4:03 pm on Friday, October 30 regarding the second community case.
The person checked in using the NZ COVID Tracer App which is an important reminder for the country to keep using the app so the system can work quickly to identify people who may have been exposed as a close contact to a case.
The person was in the store for a very short time and did not have any close contact with others during their time there, the visit according to the Ministry is regarded as a very low risk and a ‘casual’ exposure event — anyone who is concerned about potential contact with these cases can get free advice from Healthline 24 hours every day of the week on 0800 358 5453.
Genome sequencing of the first staff member was received earlier today, and it indicates that their viral genome is the same as that of the five international mariners at the facility.
This genome has not been seen in New Zealand before. Genome sequencing of the second staff member is currently underway.
The results of the two staff members will mean that all the international mariners who had their stays will be extended until Friday as an additional precautionary measure.
Finally, the investigation around these cases is actively underway and will be thorough and will include a full assessment of the cases’ movements in the facilities. An intensive review of video footage and further interviews with the two cases will determine any potential sources of the infection.