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Pānui

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COVID-19 RESPONSE UPDATE

We receive regular communications from the Deputy Director-General | Māori Health Directorate, Ministry of Health and we will use this pānui to share all of this information.


Important:

Please remind your friends and whānau to get information on COVID-19 and the vaccine from our trusted sources – the Ministry of Health website, Unite Against COVID channels, Karawhiua channels, and the Te Puni Kōkiri ‘COVID-19 Information for Māori’ portal. For guidance on protecting yourself and your whānau from COVID-19 misinformation and scams, please visit the Unite Against COVID website.


The latest or most recent update will be at the top and you can scroll down to see previous communications.


Note: This is only for the August-October 2021 COVID-19 Alert Restrictions

Date: 13 October 2021 at 5:50:57 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 55 new community cases and Waikato and Te Tai Tokerau will stay at Alert Level 3

Kei ngā whatu mauri o ngā tihi whakarongo kōrero, tēnei te mihi atu rā ki a koutou katoa. Following discussions today, Cabinet has decided Waikato and Te Tai Tokerau will remain at Alert Level 3 for a further five days until 11.59pm Monday 18 October. Tāmaki Makaurau remains at Alert Level 3 on step one of the transition plan outlined by the Prime Minister last week. Whānau in Waikato have done a phenomenal job over the past few weeks in getting tested and vaccinated. The rohe has achieved a record increase in the number of people vaccinated in one week recording a 5% increase in first doses. So, thank you to all our whānau in Waikato for getting out there and supporting our response. Thanks also to our whānau in Te Tai Tokerau for mobilising to get tested and vaccinated. In the rohe, there have been 19,691 vaccinations in the past seven days, that’s more than double the rate of vaccinations delivered in the previous week. Heoi anō, it’s critical we continue to see this momentum in both Waikato and Te Tai Tokerau over the next few days. This will help us determine whether there are any more cases, and once we’re confident there isn’t any undetected transmission, we’ll be able to ease restrictions. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu tātou katoa. 55 new community cases in Aotearoa, including two in Waikato

  • Today, there are a total of 55 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; 53 of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau and two are in Waikato, which brings the total number of cases in Waikato to 37.

  • The total number of cases associated with this outbreak is now 1,719. Of these, 1,188 have recovered giving us an active total of 531.

  • Of today’s 55 new cases in Tāmaki Makaurau, 26 are yet to be linked, and interviews are underway.

  • Of yesterday’s cases, 10 remain unlinked at this point with investigations ongoing.

  • There are now 32 people in hospital with COVID-19. Six of these cases are in ICU with one requiring ventilation. My whakaaro continue to be with these people and their whānau during this stressful time.

Update on our response in Waikato

  • There are two new community cases in Waikato. Both are members of the same household in Kirikiriroa. They have been transferred to a local quarantine facility today.

  • At this stage, the cases are unlinked but interviews are being carried out to help determine any links to known cases.

  • Two workplace exposure events have been identified but Kirikiriroa residents are encouraged to keep checking the Ministry’s website for any locations of interest.

  • Vaccination rates in Waikato remained high yesterday with 7,434 people getting vaccinated. There were also 2,980 tests processed in the rohe yesterday.

  • I want to thank all our whānau and kaimahi hauora in Waikato for responding so well to this current outbreak. I understand it’s been difficult going back into Alert Level 3, however, it’s important we keep up the good mahi to keep our people safe.

Update on our Te Tai Tokerau response

  • Regarding the second person who had been located a couple days ago, there was a further interview yesterday but at this stage there are no further locations of interest associated with their travel.

  • We continue to encourage all our whānau in Te Tai Tokerau to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Additionally, if anyone has COVID-19 symptoms, we’re encouraging them to stay home and get tested.

  • Heoi anō, rates for both testing and vaccination remain high in Te Tai Tokerau with 3,905 doses of COVID-19 vaccine given yesterday, including 1,1385 first doses and 2,520 second doses. For testing, the rohe saw 1,765 tests completed yesterday, taking the total since 6 October to 7,045 tests.

  • There are currently seven community testing sites and eight community vaccination centres operating in the rohe. You can view these on Healthpoint.

My COVID Record is now live

  • Everyone in Aotearoa aged 16 and over can now view their COVID-19 vaccination records online via My Covid Record.

  • My COVID Record provides details of the COVID-19 vaccinations you’ve already had, including date, time, location, and batch number.

  • At this stage, vaccination records will only show up if the doses were administered in Aotearoa.

  • Kia mōhio mai, these records are for personal reference and can’t be used as proof of vaccination for overseas travel.

  • Digital vaccination certificates for travel will be available at the end of November. This will include one vaccination certificate for use in Aotearoa and another for use when traveling overseas.

  • You can find out more on the Ministry of Health website.

Update on our COVID-19 vaccination roll-out

  • We’ve reached another significant milestone in our vaccination rollout – six million doses of the vaccine have now been delivered across Aotearoa. I want to mihi to all our whānau and kaimahi hauora for making this possible.

  • We’re also seeing great numbers in other areas - three-quarters of the eligible population have either been fully vaccinated or are booked in to get their second dose.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 353,840 of our people have had one dose of the vaccine, and 224,718 have had their second dose and are fully vaccinated.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, Super Saturday is taking place this weekend. Groups throughout the motu are pulling out all the stops to increase vaccination national vaccination rates.

  • A couple of innovative examples people can expect to see include vaccination caravans, travel boats for whānau to get vaccinated, and an airplane vaccination clinic at Tāmaki Makaurau airport thanks to Air NZ. Our Māori health providers will also be working hard this weekend to support our whānau.

  • Please help by letting your whānau and friends know about Super Saturday and by encouraging them to get vaccinated as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • You can find out more details about Super Saturday on the Unite Against COVID website.



Date: 12 October 2021 at 6:07:49 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 43 new cases including three in Waikato and information on Super Saturday

Rau rangatira mā, koutou e ārahi ana i tā tātou whawhai ki te Mate Kowheori, tēnā rawa atu koutou katoa. We continue to make progress in our fight against COVID-19. Looking back on the past several weeks, it’s been encouraging to see our people responding so well to our tikanga hauora and Alert Level restrictions. All of these play a massive part in helping to keep our people safe, nā reira, kia kaha tātou ki te mau tonu ki ngā tikanga hauora me ngā ture o ngā Pae Mataara, hei oranga mō tātou te iwi Māori. As we’ve already said, testing and vaccination remain our most powerful tools against COVID-19. It’s critical we keep these numbers high over the next week. Please continue to help by sharing these pānui with your friends and whānau and by encouraging them to get vaccinated as soon as possible. If they’d like, they can do so this weekend as a part of the Super Saturday kaupapa. Hei whakamaumara, Tāmaki Makaurau, Waikato, and Te Tai Tokerau are all still at Alert Level 3, with slightly relaxed restrictions in Tāmaki Makaurau. The settings for Waikato and Te Tai Tokerau will be reviewed āpōpō and announced the same day while the settings in Tāmaki Makaurau will be reviewed next Monday. I’ll make sure to include all relevant updates in this pānui. 43 new community cases in Aotearoa, including three in Waikato

  • Today, there are a total of 43 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; 40 of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau and three are in Waikato, which brings the total number of cases in Waikato to 35.

  • The total number of cases associated with this outbreak is now 1,664.

  • Of today’s 40 new cases in Tāmaki Makaurau, 19 remain unlinked with interviews are underway.

  • Pleasingly, the three new cases in Waikato are all household contacts who were already in isolation.

  • Of yesterday’s 35 cases, 14 remain unlinked with investigations ongoing.

  • There are now 35 people in hospital. Five of these cases are in ICU, which is two less than yesterday. My whakaaro continue to be with these people and their whānau during this stressful time.

Vaccination status of this outbreak’s cases now being reported

  • We are now publishing the vaccination status of all cases in the current outbreak on our website. We’ll be updating these on a weekly basis. You can view the stats online here.

  • So far, it shows that of the 158 people hospitalised since the start of this current outbreak, only three of those were fully vaccinated.

  • This reinforces the huge protection vaccination offers to all our people.

  • Please make sure to share this resource with your networks as many of you have been asking for these details throughout the past week.

Bay of Plenty test result confirmed negative

  • The travelling companion of the first Te Tai Tokerau case, who was located by Police in West Auckland last night, has now tested positive for COVID-19 and has been transferred to an MIQ facility.

  • The person is being interviewed and any new locations of interest in Tāmaki Makaurau and Te Tai Tokerau will be posted on the Ministry of Health website as they become available.

  • I can also report that 18 contacts have been identified as associated with the first Te Tai Tokerau case. Contact tracers have contacted 17 of these individuals, one of whom is the travelling companion and four who are household contacts.

  • All 17 of these individuals have been tested. The remaining contact is being actively followed up by contact tracers and will be advised to get a test.

  • Of the 18 contacts identified, nine are in Te Tai Tokerau, seven are in Tāmaki Makaurau, one is in Pôneke, and one is still to be determined.

  • Northland DHB has stepped up testing and screening at Te Tai Tokerau hospitals for visitors and patients. Anyone with symptoms should get tested and people in Tāmaki Makaurau and Te Tai Tokerau should continue checking the Ministry’s website for new locations of interest.

Testing remains central to our COVID-19 response

  • Testing rates continue to be high across the motu with over 16,500 tests taken yesterday. Of these, 13,900 were taken in Tāmaki Makaurau, 2,430 were taken in Waikato, and over 1,200 were taken in Te Tai Tokerau. I want to mihi to our kaimahi hauora for supporting whānau on the frontline.

  • Testing remains a critical part of our efforts to find and then contain any cases, so please continue to help.

  • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter where you are in the motu, please get tested.

Update on our vaccination roll-out – Super Saturday

  • Everyone is being asked to contribute to a nationwide push for vaccination. This will culminate in a National Day of Action for Vaccination on Saturday 16 October, Super Saturday. On this day, vaccination clinics nationwide will open all day and into the evening.

  • Super Saturday is the chance for whānau to roll up their sleeves for Aotearoa and help make us one of the most vaccinated and protected countries in the world.

  • Currently, 82% of all eligible New Zealanders aged 12 and over have had their first dose of the vaccine, and 58% have had their second and are now fully vaccinated

  • For the Māori rollout, just over 61% of our people have had one dose and over 38% have had their second dose.

  • While it’s encouraging to see Māori numbers on the rise, these overall numbers still aren’t high enough to give us confidence to ease restrictions without seeing a big surge in cases.

  • So, instead of a big surges in cases, we want to see a big surge in vaccinations this week.

  • Please help by letting your whānau and friends know about Super Saturday and by encouraging them to get vaccinated as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • You can find out more details about Super Saturday, including information on our first-ever national Vaxathon, on the Unite Against COVID website.

Date: 11 October 2021 at 6:57:32 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 35 new cases and an update on our Alert Level settings

Kia rere aku whakamānawa ki a koutou e ngā manu mātārae o te motu, tēnā koutou katoa. Today, Cabinet met to review the Alert Level settings for the motu. As promised, I’ve included their decision in today’s pānui. Tāmaki Makaurau will stay at Alert Level 3 as it currently stands for another week before we can look at further easing of restrictions. This will be reviewed next Monday, and I’ll include an update in this pānui. In Waikato, the public health team on the ground have asked for more time to reassure themselves we don’t have any undetected cases. As a result, Waikato will remain at Alert Level 3 until 11.59pm on Thursday the 14th of October. In Te Tai Tokerau, we’re facing increased difficulties due to a lack of information about where our most recent case and their friend traveled. We’re therefore relying heavily on testing in the area to determine the true spread of the virus. Nā reira, Te Tai Tokerau will also stay at Alert Level 3 for a further three days until 11.59pm on Thursday 14 October. Settings for both Waikato and Te Tai Tokerau will be reviewed and announced on Wednesday. I understand this continuation of current Alert Level restrictions will be difficult for many of our whānau throughout the motu, especially for those in Tāmaki Makaurau, Waikato, and Te Tai Tokerau. Heoi anō, it’s critical we continue to uphold our tikanga hauora and Alert Level restrictions to prevent further spread of the virus and keep our people safe. 35 new community cases in Aotearoa, all are in Tāmaki Makaurau

  • Today, there are a total of 35 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; all of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,622.

  • Of today’s 35 new cases, 14 have known links to existing cases (including four household contacts) and 21 remain under investigation.

  • Due to time of reporting, the previously reported case in the Bay of Plenty rohe is included in the case tally today, however, it is understood to be under investigation, after a follow-up test returned a negative result – further details are below.

  • Regarding hospitalisations, there are now 33 people in hospital. Seven of these cases are still in ICU. My whakaaro continue to be with these people and their whānau during this stressful time.

Bay of Plenty test result confirmed negative

  • The Ministry of Health can confirm that a follow-up test, for a person currently in Katikati, in the Bay of Plenty region, returned a negative result.

  • While the case remains under investigation, the public health risk is deemed low given the person’s vaccination status, regular test history, good use of the NZ COVID Tracer app and rapid contact, testing and isolation of family members, all of whom also returned negative results.

  • I want to mihi to all the individuals involved for their cooperation and to Toi Te Ora Public Health for their precautionary approach, taking swift action to ensure public health safety.

Update on our response in Te Tai Tokerau

  • Te Tai Tokerau will remain at Alert Level 3 3 until 11.59pm on Thursday 14th October.

  • The Tāmaki Makaurau case who traveled to Te Tai Tokerau remains in a Tāmaki Makaurau quarantine facility.

  • We’ve been able to contact the second person who is thought to have traveled with this case but have not yet located them.

  • Public health kaimahi continue to work closely with the person to determine any locations of interest or exposure events associated with the case. There are currently 21 close contacts associated with this case including their household and travel companion.

  • As locations of interest become known, they will be added to the Ministry’s website as quickly as possible. We’re asking whānau to check these regularly, especially if they have visited, or live in Te Tai Tokerau.

  • Whānau with COVID-19 symptoms are asked to get tested as soon as possible. High testing rates will give us the confidence to ease Alert Level restrictions.

  • You can view all the testing sites available in Te Tai Tokerau on Healthpoint.

Update on our response in Waikato

  • Waikato will remain at Alert Level 3 until 11.59pm on Thursday 14th October.

  • Waikato has demonstrated the effectiveness of our ‘stamp-out’ approach. There are no new community cases to report in the region today, with all 31 existing cases linked to the original index case in the region.

  • Yesterday across the rohe, 1,212 swabs were taken, and 3,292 vaccinations administered. A big mihi to all our whānau and kaimahi hauora for making this happen.

  • We’re still encouraging all our people in the area to get vaccinated as soon as possible. We’re also asking for all symptomatic people to get tested.

  • There are three pop-up testing centres operating today at Claudelands Event Centre, Te Kohao Health in Hamilton East, and one at Raglan, as well as the existing testing centre at Founders Theatre.

  • Further details on exact locations and hours of testing sites are available on the Healthpoint and Waikato DHB sites.

Vaccinations now mandatory for large parts of the education and health workforces

  • As announced at today’s stand-up, vaccinations are now mandatory for large parts of our education and health workforces.

  • Regarding the health and disability sector, all high-risk workers will need to be fully vaccinated by 1st of December and will need to have received their first dose by the 31st of October. This includes GPs, pharmacists, community health nurses, midwives, paramedics, and all healthcare workers in sites where vulnerable patients are treated, including intensive care units.

  • We’ll also be including certain non-regulated healthcare workforces including aged-residential care, home and community support services, kaupapa Māori health providers, and NGOs that provide health services.

  • For the education sector, kaimahi at schools and early learning centres, and the support staff who work with them, will need to be fully vaccinated by the 1st of January 2022. The target for them to receive their first dose is the 15th of November.

  • Those unable to meet the above targets will be required to undergo weekly testing until they are fully vaccinated.

  • It’s critical we provide protection for our most vulnerable, especially for those who cannot protect themselves including tamariki who aren’t yet eligible for vaccination, and immuno-compromised whānau members.


Date: 10 October 2021 at 5:59:59 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 60 new community cases including three in Waikato and one in the Bay of Plenty

Kei aku manu tāiko huri noa i te motu, koutou e ārahi ana i te iwi Māori, tēnā rawa atu koutou katoa. I hope you’ve all found time this weekend to rest and recuperate. You’ll see from today’s numbers there is a spike in the number of new cases, and one of those cases has been identified in the Bay of Plenty. I understand these things can be concerning for whānau. However, it’s important we keep up our tikanga hauora and Alert Level restrictions to prevent further spread and protect our communities. It’s critical we continue to āwhina and manaaki one another whenever we can. A simple action like reaching out to your friends and whānau and asking how they’ve been can help get them through a challenging time. Nā reira, as we face a new week with its own set of challenges, please remember to kōrero to your people, manaaki one other, and encourage each other to keep up the good fight. Ko tā tātou toa he toa takitini, ehara i te toa takitahi. Kia kaha tonu tātou katoa. 60 new community cases in Aotearoa, including three in Waikato and one in the Bay of Plenty

  • Today, there are a total of 60 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; 56 of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region, one is in the Bay of Plenty, and three are in Waikato, which means the total number of cases in Waikato is now 31.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,587.

  • Of today’s 56 cases in Tāmaki Makaurau, 37 have known links to existing cases (including 22 household contacts) and 19 remain under investigation.

  • The three new cases in Waikato are all linked to the initial Hamilton East case.

  • The Bay of Plenty case was reported publicly last evening and is included in today’s numbers.

  • Regarding hospitalisations, there are now 29 people in hospital. Seven of these cases are still in ICU. My whakaaro continue to be with these people and their whānau during this stressful time.

Further details on the Bay of Plenty case

  • A positive COVID-19 test result for a person currently living near Katikati was reported yesterday. The current public health assessment is that there is low risk of any further spread from this case.

  • Test results indicate infection is in the early stages. Waihoki, vaccination status of the individual, regular test history, good use of the COVID app and rapid public health follow-up with whānau members have reduced the risk of community spread.

  • All whānau members have been tested and are currently isolating. I want to thank the whānau for cooperating so well with our team and for upholding our tikanga hauora.

  • Katikati residents and visitors to the rohe since Wednesday 6 October are asked to keep checking the locations of interest page on the Ministry of Health website and follow the advice given.

Investigations continue into the Tāmaki Makaurau case who travelled to Te Tai Tokerau

  • The case reported 7 October, who recently travelled to Te Tai Tokerau, remains in a Tāmaki Makaurau quarantine facility. A second person, who is thought to have travelled with this case, has still not been able to be contacted.

  • The case was under investigation after returning a weak positive result from a test in Whangarei earlier this week. They then returned a positive test result in Tāmaki Makaurau on Friday.

  • Public health kaimahi continue to work closely with the case to determine any locations of interest or exposure events associated with the case. Public Health staff are also working closely with Police to identify possible locations or areas of interest.

  • As these become available, they will be added to the Ministry’s website as quickly as possible. We’re asking whānau to check these regularly.

Update on our response in Te Tai Tokerau

  • Testing and vaccination continue to be our most powerful weapons against COVID-19, that’s why we’re still asking whānau in Te Tai Tokerau to get vaccinated as soon as possible, and to get tested if they have any COVID-19 symptoms.

  • Northland DHB, local iwi, and providers are working hard to ensure as many Northlanders are vaccinated as possible.

  • Four clinics are open for vaccinations today, at Kaitaia, Whangarei, Dargaville, and Kerikeri.

  • As at 6am this morning, 187,357 doses had been administered across Te Tai Tokerau, comprising 110,083 first doses and 77,274 second doses.

  • Yesterday, 1,101 first doses and 1,990 second doses were given to whānau, totaling 3,091 doses across the rohe.

Update on the Waikato response

  • As mentioned, today’s three new cases in Waikato are linked to existing cases. Interviews are continuing to determine any further contacts or locations of interest.

  • Over 3600 swabs were taken in the rohe yesterday and we’re still encouraging any whānau with symptoms to get tested. There are pop-up testing sites operating today at Claudelands and Raglan. The existing testing centre at Founders Theatre is also open.

  • Further details on exact locations and hours of testing sites are available on the Healthpoint and Waikato DHB sites.

  • A strong response to vaccinations has continued in the rohe with 7017 vaccines administered yesterday. Thank you to all our whānau for turning up and to all our kaimahi hauora for holding the frontline.

  • Alert levels for the whole of the Waikato will be reviewed again on Monday and I’ll make sure to include any updates in this pānui.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • Yesterday, 81,831 doses of the vaccine were given across the motu. This includes 18,301 first doses and 65,530 second doses. This is an outstanding effort so thanks to everyone for getting out there to get vaccinated.

  • For the Māori rollout, 344,451 of our people have had one dose of the vaccination and 210,719 have had their second dose and are fully vaccinated. This means over 60% of our whānau have had one dose and just under 40% have had their second.

  • If you’re interested in vaccine uptake by suburb and ethnicity, please check out this interactive map developed by our friends at Global Risk Consulting. It’s a great tool so please feel free to share with your networks.

  • Please also continue to tautoko our vaccine rollout by encouraging your friends and whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.



Date: 8 October 2021 at 7:32:03 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - Te Tai Tokerau to move to Alert Level 3 at 11.59pm tonight and 44 new cases

Papaki kau ana ngā tai o mihi ki a koutou katoa e ngā kaiurungi o te waka hauora ki Aotearoa, tēnā rawa atu koutou katoa. Kia mōhio mai koutou, Te Tai Tokerau will move to Alert Level 3 at 11.59pm tonight following recent information on the risk presented by the positive case initially tested in Whangarei earlier this week and confirmed in Tāmaki Makaurau yesterday. This person is now in a Tāmaki Makaurau managed isolation facility. As Minister Hipkins said at tonight’s stand-up, updated information provided by police today shows the case moved extensively around Te Tai Tokerau after travelling there on the 2nd of October. We recognise it’s unusual to put a region into Alert Level 3 when there are no further cases, engari, it’s vitally important we get ahead of any potential spread and set up widespread testing and continue contact tracing efforts. Restrictions in Te Tai Tokerau will remain in place until 11.59pm Tuesday and will be reviewed by cabinet on Monday. This is a strict Alert Level 3 and as with Waikato, the easing steps announced for Tāmaki Makaurau earlier this week will not apply to Te Tai Tokerau. We’re asking all our whānau in Te Tai Tokerau to stay home, get tested as soon as possible if they have any symptoms, and continue to check the Ministry of Health website for updated locations of interest. Ka mutu, please continue to encourage your whānau in the north to get vaccinated as soon as possible. I know this will be difficult for many of our people. Heoi anō, tonight’s announcement is a stark reminder of how important it is we continue to uphold our tikanga hauora and Alert Level restrictions, no matter where we are in the country. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu tātou e hoa mā. 44 new community cases in Aotearoa, including three in Waikato

  • Today, there are a total of 44 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; 41 of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region and three are in Waikato, which means the total number of cases in Waikato is now 25.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,492.

  • Since the outbreak started, 1085 have recovered giving us an active total of 407.

  • Of today’s 41 cases in Tāmaki Makaurau, nine are yet to be linked to a current case and interviews are ongoing.

  • All the cases in Waikato are linked, which is great news for our response.

  • Regarding hospitalisations, there are 25 people in hospital. Five of these cases are in ICU. My whakaaro continue to be with these tūroro and their whānau during this stressful time.

Further information on the situation in Te Tai Tokerau

  • The case reported last night, who recently travelled to Te Tai Tokerau, was last night transferred to a Tāmaki Makaurau quarantine facility, under strict infection prevention and control procedures, including the use of full PPE.

  • The case was under investigation after returning a weak positive result from a test in Whangarei earlier this week and yesterday returned a positive test result in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Public health kaimahi are continuing investigations to identify locations of interest and exposure events associated with the case.

  • The first locations of interest for Te Tai Tokerau have been added to the Ministry of Health’s website. They are the BP Connect Wylies petrol station at 49 Maunu Road, Woodhill, Whangarei from 11.20pm on 2 October to 12.20am 3 October, and the Z Kensington service station, corner of Kamo Road and Nixon Street, Whangarei from 3.45pm-4.45pm on 4 October.

  • You can view all testing sites on Healthpoint.

Testing remains critical to our COVID-19 response

  • We continue to see high testing rates with 29,925 swabs processed throughout the motu yesterday.

  • In Tāmaki Makaurau, there were 10,439 swabs taken across the city yesterday.

  • We’re still encouraging anyone living in our eight suburbs of interest to get tested to give us reassurance that there isn’t any undetected spread in those communities.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, our eight suburbs of interest are Clover Park, Māngere, Favona, Manurewa, Mount Wellington/Sylvia Park, Henderson, Papakura, and Red Beach.

  • Our message for this weekend remains the same, ahakoa kei hea koe i te motu, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, even if they’re mild, please get a test.

Update on the Waikato response

  • The three new cases in Waikato are all linked and contacts of existing cases. Interviews are continuing to determine any further contacts or locations of interest.

  • There continues to be a strong response to calls for testing in Waikato with 5,180 swabs taken yesterday.

  • There are seven pop up testing sites operating today at Claudelands, Te Rapa, Karapiro, Raglan, Huntly, Kawhia and Tokoroa, with extended hours to cater for demand. The existing testing centre at Founders Theatre is also open.

  • Further details on exact locations and hours of testing sites are available on the Healthpoint and Waikato DHB sites.

  • The Ministry of Health urges anyone in the Waikato with any COVID-19 symptoms to get a test.

  • Waikato turned out in record numbers yesterday to get vaccinated with 10,397 doses given, with large increases seen in rural areas. This equates to a 4% increase in first doses across the Waikato in one day. Over 77% of people in the Waikato have now received their first dose and 52% are fully vaccinated. A big mihi to everyone who came forward.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • Yesterday, our total doses administered of 82,303 ranks in the top 10 highest daily totals since the programme began and is the highest daily figure since 3 September, and total doses administered to Māori was a record high of 10,145.

  • I want to mihi to our Māori providers and communities for supporting whānau to access vaccinations, ka wani kē koutou katoa.

  • Ka mutu, the number of second doses administered yesterday – 62,598 – was also the highest ever second dose daily figure.

  • The more fully vaccinated people in the community, the safer we all are – and there is now more than 51% of the eligible population who have received two doses, which is great news for our response.

  • Please continue to help by encouraging your friends and whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

Date: 7 October 2021 at 6:46:19 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 29 new cases and the Waikato boundary has been extended

Kei ngā rangatira katoa o te motu, koutou e mahi ana mō te hauora o te tangata te take, nei te reo o te Manatū Hauora e mihi atu ana ki a koutou, tēnā rā koutou katoa. Following yesterday’s news in which we saw cases emerging outside of the Alert Level 3 boundary in Waikato, Cabinet has agreed to extend the boundary further south. The extension will cover the Waitomo district, including Te Kuiti, as well as the Waipā and Ōtorohanga districts. A map has been published on the Unite Against COVID website. These areas will now come under the same Alert Level 3 restrictions as the rest of Waikato from 11.59pm tonight. It is the conventional Alert Level 3 we’re all familiar with. The easing of steps in Tāmaki Makaurau announced earlier in the week will not apply to this area. At this point, the Alert Level 3 restrictions in Waikato will apply until 11.59pm on Monday night. This will be reviewed by Cabinet on the same day. During the next four days, we’re aiming for wide testing, contact tracing, and further wastewater testing in the area. These will help us make an assessment on how long these restrictions need to remain in place. We’re also asking whānau in these areas to get tested and vaccinated as soon as possible. While the rest of the motu, excluding Tāmaki Makaurau, remains at Alert Level 2, it’s critical we all continue to uphold our tikanga hauora and Alert Level measures to keep COVID at bay. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu tātou katoa, he roa tonu te ara kei mua i a tātou. 29 new community cases in Aotearoa, including five in Waikato

  • Today, there are a total of 29 new community cases to report in Aotearoa; 24 of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region and five are in Waikato, which means the total number of cases in Waikato is now 22.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,448.

  • Of today’s 24 cases in Tāmaki Makaurau, seven are yet to be linked to a current case and interviews are ongoing. All the cases in Waikato are linked, which is great news for our response.

  • Of yesterday’s cases reported, only one case in Tāmaki Makaurau remains unlinked.

  • Two previously active sub-clusters are now classified as dormant in that they haven’t had an active cases outside of a household contact for 14 days. This means there are now 10 active sub-clusters in this outbreak.

  • Regarding hospitalisations, there are 23 people in hospital with COVID-19, four of which are in ICU or a high dependency ward. This is significant drop from the 32 in hospital yesterday with nine people discharged.

  • For those still in hospital, this is a stressful time for them and their whānau and my whakaaro continue to be with them.

Testing remains critical to our COVID-19 response

  • We continue to see high testing rates with 23,387 swabs processed throughout the motu yesterday.

  • In Tāmaki Makaurau, there were 12,757 swabs taken across the city yesterday. Of these, over 2,800 tests were taken from our eight suburbs of interest.

  • We’re still encouraging anyone living in those suburbs to get tested to give us reassurance that there isn’t any undetected spread in those communities.

  • We’ve seen an excellent response from our latest suburb of interest, Red Beach, with over 1,200 people tested in the past two days.

  • There are 22 testing sites open in Tāmaki Makaurau today, including 16 pop-ups. Four of the community testing centres are operating extended hours in Wiri, Northcote, Balmoral and Ōtara to improve access for essential and permitted workers.

  • Ka mutu, no matter where you are in the country, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, please get a test.

Update on the Waikato response

  • As mentioned above, all cases in Waikato have been epidemiologically linked to the outbreak in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Yesterday, 6,480 swabs were taken throughout the rohe, and 7,976 vaccinations were given.

  • To date, 72.3% of the eligible Waikato population have had their first dose and 45.5% are fully vaccinated.

  • Pop-up testing and vaccinations began today in the Kāwhia area. There is testing from today until Saturday at Maketu Marae and mobile vaccinations at Taharoa and Marokopa on Friday.

  • In Karapiro, pop-up testing continues at the Mighty River Domain.

  • Following the exposure event at the Emergency Department at Waikato Hospital that was reported yesterday, all 50 ED staff have returned negative COVID-19 tests, with most cleared to return to mahi. Of the kaimahi who visited ED at the same time as the case, 30 have returned negative tests and a further 22 tests are still to be processed, with results expected today.

  • I want to mihi to all our kaimahi hauora in Waikato for supporting whānau on the frontline and responding so quickly to this situation.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • To date, over 5.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered across the motu, including 3.38 million first doses and 2.15 million second doses.

  • Yesterday, 70,198 vaccines were administered throughout the country, with 18,847 people receiving their first dose, and 51,351 people receiving their second.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 332,741 of our whānau have had one dose of the vaccine, and 191,873 have had their second dose and are fully vaccinated. This means 58% of our people have had one dose and 33.5% have had their second.

  • As Minister Hipkins said earlier today, vaccination is the best tool we have to provide everyone with their individual armour against COVID-19 and to reduce the need for strict restrictions in the future.

  • It’s clear the virus is finding people who aren’t vaccinated, we’ve seen this already in the number and type of cases coming through.

  • You can help increase Māori vaccination rates, by continuing to encourage your friends and whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

Date: 2 October 2021 at 7:37:20 PM NZDT Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 27 new community cases

Kei aku whatukura, kei aku māreikura nō ngā mātāwaka o te motu, tēnā rā koutou katoa. We are now in the seventh week of this latest outbreak. I know the past two months have been tiring and difficult for many of you. Lockdowns are never easy, but they’re a necessary tool to help keep our communities safe. We’ve seen how effective they can be throughout the past few weeks when coupled with other public health measures like testing and vaccination. Once more, we’ve managed to prevent a widespread outbreak throughout the motu because of our collective efforts to uphold our tikanga hauora and follow Alert Level restrictions. So, thank you to everyone who has helped get us to where we are today. Thank you to our kaimahi hauora for helping our people on the frontline and thank you to our whānau for supporting this response. You’ll see from today’s update that we continue to make progress. Heoi anō, we must stay vigilant to not lose any of the gains we’ve made. You can help by continuing to adhere to your relevant Alert Level measures. If you’re sick, please stay home and get tested, continue to encourage your whānau to get vaccinated, and most importantly, manaakiha te katoa, be kind to everyone. 27 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 27 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today, all of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,295.

  • Since the outbreak started, 1068 people have recovered, giving us an active total of 227 cases.

  • Of today’s 27 new cases, 22 have already been epidemiologically linked – 14 of these are household contacts and eight are known contacts of existing cases.

  • Investigations are ongoing for the remaining five cases.

  • Regarding cases that have popped up over the past two weeks, only ten remain unlinked. Our kaimahi hauora throughout the motu continue to work hard to determine how these cases are linked to the current outbreak.

  • Due to the highly infectious nature of the Delta variant within households, we expect to see fluctuations in case numbers at this stage in the outbreak.

Testing remains essential to our control of the outbreak

  • Over 2,041 tests were taken yesterday, including more than 13,083 swabs taken in the Tāmaki Makaurau rohe.

  • Of these, 2,878 tests were received from our seven suburbs of interest.

  • We still want all people in these suburbs of interest to come forward and get tested as soon as possible. This will help us determine whether there are any undetected chains of transmission.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, our suburbs of interest are Clover Park, Māngere, Favona, Manurewa, Mount Wellington/Sylvia Park, Henderson and Papakura.

  • Ka mutu, key message for this weekend remains the same – ahakoa kei hea koe i te motu, no matter where you are in the country, if you have any symptoms of COVID-19, please call Healthline or your GP for advice about getting a test.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • To date, more 5.26 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered across the motu. This includes 3.3 million first doses and 1.96 million second doses.

  • Yesterday, more than 47,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were administered across the motu including 12,278 first doses and 35,234-second doses.

  • It’s encouraging to see testing numbers staying high. It’s also great to see an increase in the amount of people getting their second doses and becoming fully vaccinated.

  • For the Māori rollout, 320,845 of our whānau have received one dose of the vaccination, and 172,785 have received the second dose. This means over 56% of our people have had one dose and over 30% are fully vaccinated.

  • It’s good to see Māori numbers steadily increasing, however, we still have some way to go. Please continue to encourage your friends and whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

Date: 25 September 2021 at 5:35:23 PM NZST Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 16 new community cases and a mihi to our pharmacists

Kia rere atu aku mihi whakamānawa ki a koutou e ngā whakaruruhau o te motu, tēnā rā koutou katoa. Today is World Pharmacists Day and I want to mihi to all our Māori pharmacists throughout the motu for the work they’ve been doing to support the COVID-19 response and vaccination rollout. More than 250 pharmacies from across Aotearoa have signed up to offer vaccinations – a third of all community and primary care vaccination sites in Aotearoa are pharmacies. Our pharmacists have played a key role in the vaccination rollout which was demonstrated last week when they were responsible for delivering 14% of the total vaccines given over the seven days. They’ve also demonstrated incredible agility and resilience at all Alert Levels by continuing to provide essential services, including medicines and medicines advice to their communities. Nā reira, kei ngā kaimahi o ngā whare rongoā huri noa i te motu, tēnā rawa atu koutou. Today also marks the midpoint of our sixth weekend since the latest outbreak started. I hope you’re all finding time to rest and recover with friends and whānau. Although our latest numbers have been promising, we still have some way to go. Kia kaha tonu tātou katoa. 16 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 16 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today, all of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,146.

  • Since the outbreak started, 920 people have recovered giving us an active total of 226. All cases in one of the largest subclusters – the Birkdale Social Network – have now recovered, which is great news.

  • Of today’s 16 new community cases, 13 have already been epidemiologically linked and investigations continue for the three remaining cases.

  • Of the new cases that have arisen over the past fortnight, only 10 remain unlinked.

  • There are currently 13 people in hospital across Tāmaki Makaurau, with four in intensive care. One person is in North Shore Hospital, five are in Middlemore, and seven are in Auckland Hospital. My whaakaro continue to be with these people and their whānau during this stressful time.

Testing continues in Tāmaki Makaurau

  • Testing continues across Tāmaki Makaurau with a particular focus on Clover Park, Māngere, Favona, Ōtara, Manurewa and Mount Wellington/Sylvia Park.

  • There is a new pop-up community testing centre open today at the Te Hana cafe carpark.

  • From tomorrow, the Pukekohe pop-up community testing centre will move from the Pukekohe A&P Showgrounds to the Pukekohe Netball Centre. Planning is underway for a pop-up testing centre to open in Tuakau tomorrow.

  • The pop-up community testing centre at the Manukau Sports Bowl is open this weekend from 8.30am – 4pm and will remain in place until Friday 1 October.

  • Our message on testing remains the same – please get tested if you are a contact, have visited a location of interest at the specific dates and times, are connected to a suburb of interest or have any symptoms of COVID-19 – even those with mild symptoms need to get tested and isolate at home while waiting for test results.

  • For all testing locations nationwide, check out Healthpoint.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • There have now been more than 4.96 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccination given to whānau throughout the motu. Of those, more than 3.21 million were first doses and more than 1.75 million were second doses.

  • Yesterday, more than 50,600 doses were administered across the country. That’s broken down into 18,981 first doses, and 31,619-second doses.

  • Once more, it’s encouraging to see the second doses on the rise as that means more eligible New Zealanders are fully vaccinated.

  • For the Māori rollout, 307,040 of our whānau have received one dose of the vaccination, and 154,162 have received their second dose.

  • The vaccine is one of the most important tools in our battle against COVID-19. The more of our whānau aged 12 and over who get vaccinated, the more opportunities open up, and the more this reduces the need for lockdowns in the future.

  • Our best shot at beating COVID-19 is a combination of high vaccination rates and good public health measures. Nā reira, please continue to encourage your whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

Date: 23 September 2021 at 5:53:35 PM NZST Subject: COVID-19 Response Update - 15 new community cases and new Māori Health Authority appointments announced

Kia rere arorangi aku whakamānawa ki te Atua Matua i te rangi, kia hora iho mai āna manaakitanga me tōna atawhai ki runga i a tātou katoa, tēnā rā koutou. It’s been an exciting day for Māori health with the announcement of the Māori Health Authority’s new board. Today’s announcement brings us one step closer to a future health system, one that will deliver better outcomes for our people. Congratulations to both Sharon Shea and Tipa Mahuta on their well-deserved appointments as co-chairs for the Māori Health Authority; and to the remaining board members as well. I’m mindful of the mountain of work ahead of them and wish them all the best of luck. You can read the full media release on the appointments here. I also want to mihi to Tā Mason Durie, whose steering group worked tirelessly to support this appointment process ensuring we have the best possible candidates. Kei taku rangatira, e mihi ana. Heoi anō, amidst today’s announcements, the Māori COVID-19 response continues. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu tātou, let’s stay vigilant, Delta will fight back if we let it. You can help by following your Alert Level rules and upholding our tikanga hauora – stay home if unwell, get tested, and get vaccinated. 15 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 15 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today, all of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1,123.

  • Since the outbreak started, 861 people have recovered giving us an active total of 262.

  • Of today’s 15 new cases, 12 have already been epidemiologically linked – two are contacts of known cases and 10 are household contacts. The three remaining unlinked cases are still under investigation.

  • Yesterday’s one unlinked case has now been linked.

  • There are currently 15 people in hospital across Tāmaki Makaurau, with three in intensive care. E whakaaro tonu ana ahau ki ēnei tūroro me ō rātou whānau i tēnei wā taumaha.

Testing update - Tāmaki Makaurau suburbs of interest have been changed

  • Over 19,000 swabs were processed across the motu yesterday with 8370 taken across Tāmaki Makaurau, which included a large portion of essential workers.

  • So far, over 37,000 essential kaimahi in Tāmaki Makaurau have been tested since the 1st of September. This is great news, nā reira, thank you to all the essential workers for supporting our response.

  • The Tāmaki Makaurau suburbs of interest have now changed. Mount Eden, Massey, and Papatoetoe are no longer included, but Mount Wellington has been added to the list. Whānau in these suburbs are asked to come forward for testing.

  • There’s also been a great response to testing in the Clover Park suburb over the past two days. Another 777 swabs were taken yesterday in the area which means 10% of the Clover Park population have been tested in the past two days. Ka rawe hoki koutou.

  • Additionally, 60% of Clover Park residents have already had one vaccination. We’re encouraging the remaining people in the area to get out and get vaccinated as soon as possible.

Update on the Upper Hauraki response

  • The local response in the Upper Hauraki has been tracking along well with high testing rates and good community support.

  • Every kaiako and tauira at Mangatangi School has now been tested and all but one has returned negative results, the other result is still outstanding.

  • The only positive tests we’ve had in that rohe have come from the same whare in Whakatīwai where the first cases originated.

  • We are confident there is no evidence of community spread beyond the household, and we have reassurance from a significant level of testing in the region, including wastewater testing.

  • Nā reira, the Director-General has lifted the Section 70 restrictions for people outside the Upper Hauraki who were included in the restrictions. These people had been in the region between the 8th and 20th of September and had departed prior to 7:30pm on the 20th. These people are no longer required to isolate.

  • However, the Upper Hauraki stays at Alert Level 3. Whānau living within the rohe are still required to follow Alert Level 3 restrictions. This is being reviewed today and a decision will be announced tomorrow.

Vaccination numbers continue to climb

  • Yesterday, 49,667 doses of the COVID-19 vaccination were administered across the country. Of that total, 24,339 were first doses and 25,338 were second doses.

  • For the Māori rollout, we’ve reached a new milestone with over 300,00 Māori receiving one dose of the vaccination and over 148,000 have had their second dose and are fully vaccinated.

  • As the Prime Minister said earlier today, the more of our people that are vaccinated, the fewer restrictions we’ll have to live with in the future.

  • We all know lockdowns and Alert Level restrictions can be incredibly difficult for our whānau, many of whom are already struggling. We also know that vaccinations are one of our best defenses against future outbreaks.

That’s why it’s critical we continue to encourage our whānau and friends to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

20 September 2021


Changes to our Alert Level settings and an update on the Whakatīwai response


Tēnei te reo o te Manatū Hauora, te mihi atu rā ki a koutou e ngâ mana, e ngā reo o ngā tōpito katoa o te motu, tēnā rawa atu koutou katoa. The Prime Minister announced this afternoon that Tāmaki Makaurau will move to Alert Level 3 at 11.59pm tomorrow night, Tuesday 21 September. Given the expected long tail of Delta, Tāmaki Makaurau will stay at Alert Level 3 for at least two weeks, with Cabinet reviewing these settings on Monday 4 October. The rest of Aotearoa will stay at Alert Level 2 with slightly relaxed settings – the number of people who can gather at Alert Level 2 has now increased from 50 to 100. I know Alert Level 4 has been incredibly difficult for whānau in Tāmaki Makaurau and the new two weeks will provide its own challenges. However, this lock-down has been critical in preventing the spread of Delta and protecting our communities. Modellers have predicted that if we waited just one week longer to go into lock-down, we’d be sitting at about 5000 cases right now. Nā reira, our shift to Alert Level 4 has done what we needed it to do – contain the outbreak, and keep our people safe. Heoi anō, I wanted to use this pōnui to update you on our response and speak to the new Alert Level settings and what they mean for you and your whānau.


Alert Level 3 for whānau in Tāmaki Makaurau

  • Tuatahi, you must stay within your household bubble as much as possible. You are unable to visit friends, whānau, or neighbours. I know this is strict, but it’s in place for a reason. If you break your bubble, you may be putting your whānau members at risk. We’ve seen this already with many of our cases throughout the past month.

  • Heoi, you can make small extensions to your bubble to bring in a person who may be isolated or vulnerable such as a kaumātua. You are also able to bring in a caregiver or whānau member to support you with your tamariki if need be.

  • Kaumātua aged 65 and over who have not been vaccinated are encouraged to stay at home until they have been. Once vaccinated, they’ll be able to leave the whare to get kai or other essential items, so please encourage your kaumātua to book in as soon as possible.

  • When out and about, please keep your distance from others. You should keep a distance of at least two metres in public and in retail stores, and one metre in controlled environments, like at mahi.

  • Kura are closed, and tamariki should only be going to school if their parents are essential workers unable to work from home. In the rare instance where children have to go to school, face coverings are now mandatory. This doesn’t apply however to children under 12.

  • The rest of us are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering when outside and, in a place, where it’s hard to keep distance from others. You must also legally wear a face covering when on public transport and flights, when visiting healthcare facilities, and when inside any Alert Level 3 businesses and services that are still open and involve customer contact.

  • Gatherings of up to 10 people can go ahead, but only for weddings and tangihanga. You can read more about tangihanga on the Ministry of Health website.

  • Travel throughout the motu remains restricted, particularly for whānau wanting to travel to, out of, or through Tāmaki Makaurau. You can read more about travel guidelines on the Unite Against COVID website.

  • Lastly, if you are māuiui, please stay home and call your health provider or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 to ask about getting a test.

  • You can read the full set of Alert Level 3 guidelines on the Unite Against COVID website.

22 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 22 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today, including three in the Whakatīwai area. These three cases fall within the Counties Manukau DHB catchment and are therefore being counted in the Tāmaki Makaurau total.

  • This brings the total number of cases associated with this outbreak to 1071 with 1054 in Tāmaki Makaurau. Since the outbreak, 694 people have recovered giving us an active total of 377, all of these are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Of the cases reported today, the majority are household or known cases. Five are unlinked, however three of these are from one whānau so we have a tentative link. Interviews are underway and I’ll provide further updates on these cases over the next few days.

Update on our response to the Whakatīwai cases

  • Testing has already begun in the Whakatīwai area and widespread testing in these communities will continue throughout the week. Over 300 swabs have already been taken in this small hapori, nā reira, e mihi ana to all the whānau who’ve helped out so far.

  • In addition to continued testing and isolation of contacts, the Director-General is going to put a Section 70 notice on the area which will place further restrictions on the people living there.

  • This is essentially a bespoke Level 4 requirement for the Whakatīwai area which is proposed to be in place for the next five days.

  • People who live there, work there, or have visited since the 8th of September should stay home and monitor for symptoms. These people should also keep watch of the locations of interest on our website, and follow any instructions if they’ve been at a location at the relevant time.

  • I know this will be hard for whānau in the area, but these restrictions will help prevent further spread and keep our people safe.

  • More details on these restrictions, including a map of the affected areas, will be uploaded to the Unite Against COVID website later. I’ll also include another update in tomorrow’s pānui.

Vaccinating all New Zealanders remains central to our response

  • Since the outbreak started, we’ve administered 1.43 million first doses of the vaccine and provided a further 660,000 people with their second dose.

  • To date, over three million New Zealanders have had one dose of the vaccine, and 1.6 million are fully vaccinated.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 291,019 Māori have received one dose of the vaccination, and 141,378 have received their second dose.

  • Vaccinating all eligible New Zealanders remains a critical part of our response because it’s one of the best defences we’ve got against COVID and future outbreaks.

  • You can help by encouraging your friends and whānau (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • If you’re looking for a vaccine centre near you, check out Karawhiua.nz or the Healthpoint website.

19 September 2021


24 new cases in the community and over 5000 swabs taken across Tāmaki Makaurau yesterday


Kia māturuturu te tōmairangi o tō te Atua atawhai ki runga i a tātou katoa i tēnei wā, ā, haere nei te wā, tēnā rā koutou katoa. While today marks the official end of Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, I hope you all continue to share te reo Māori with another. Our language is full of whakataukī that speak to its importance as a taonga, a treasure, and a means of reconnecting with our tūpuna and their world. So, as we enter another week of responding to COVID, carry the reo with you, kaua e waiho ki muri nei, and in doing so, find strength and encouragement. Ka ora te reo i a tātou, ka ora tātou i te reo, nā reira kia kaha tonu tātou ki te kōrero tonu i tō tātou reo rangatira, hei oranga mō te reo, hei oranga mō tātou anō hoki. Today also marks Women’s Suffrage Day in Aotearoa. I want to use this opportunity to mihi to all our wāhine throughout the motu for the leadership, guidance, and strength you have offered our people throughout the COVID-19 response. I am fortunate to have a strong team of wāhine with me in the Ministry and throughout the wider Māori health and disability sector. Nā reira, e mihi ana ki a koutou katoa e aku māreikura i ā koutou mahi rangatira. Heoi anō, our whawhai against COVID-19 continues this week, so we must stay vigilant. Tomorrow, Cabinet will be meeting to discuss the Alert Level settings across the motu, and I’ll be using this pānui to update you on what those settings look like and how they’ll impact you.


24 new community cases in Aotearoa and an update on the truck-driver case

  • There are 24 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region. This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 1050.

  • Of these cases, 688 are now deemed to have recovered, including all 17 cases from Pōneke. This gives us an active total of 362, all of whom are in Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Of today’s 24 new community cases, there is a known connection with 21, all of whom are in isolation. Of those 21, 19 are household contacts; twelve of these were already in quarantine when they were tested and the other nine were isolating at home. Investigations into the connections of the three remaining unlinked cases are continuing.

  • Kia mōhio mai, we expect a number of further cases in the coming days as some of the recent cases come from larger households. We know Delta is more infectious, so we expect more household contacts to test positive this week.

  • Of yesterday’s cases, all 20 have now been linked to existing cases with 18 being household contacts.

  • There are 13 people in Tāmaki Makaurau hospitals today with COVID-19, four of these people are in ICU. I know this will be a stressful time for them and their whānau so my whakaaro continue to be with them.

  • While the daily case numbers have been quite large over the weekend, we shouldn’t be concerned. Many of these cases were expected and have already been linked. What remains the same however is our response to this latest outbreak. Stay home if you’re māuiui and get tested, follow the Alert Level rules for your rohe, and get vaccinated.

Over 5000 swabs taken throughout Tāmaki Makaurau yesterday

  • There were 5,028 swabs taken throughout Tāmaki Makaurau yesterday which is a good result for a Saturday.

  • There are 20 testing community testing centres available across Tāmaki Makaurau today, including six regular community testing centres and 14 pop-up centres.

  • If you are a contact, have visited a location of interest at the relevant time, are connected to one of the seven suburbs of interest, or have any COVID-19 symptoms (even mild ones), please get a test as soon as possible and isolate at home.

  • Please also call Healthline or your GP for advice on getting a test if you have less-common COVID-19 symptoms such as diarrhoea, headaches, muscle aches, chest pains, or abdominal pains.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, our seven suburbs of interest are Mount Eden, Massey, Mângere, Papatoetoe, Manurewa, Favona and Ōtara. We’re encouraging all people in these areas to get a test as soon as possible.

  • In those seven suburbs, there were 1101 swabs taken yesterday from both symptomatic and asymptomatic people.

  • On surveillance testing, a further 1,142 essential kaimahi were tested yesterday across a wide variety of agencies and businesses. All test results were negative, which is great news.

  • Yesterday, 13,833 swabs were processed throughout the motu. A big mihi to everyone throughout the motu, particularly those in Tāmaki Makaurau, for coming forward to be tested. Your efforts are helping us identify the spread of this outbreak so we can locate COVID and stamp it out.

Update on the vaccination roll-out

  • Over 4.6 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered throughout Aotearoa as of today. Over three million people have had their first dose and 1.6 million have had their second dose and are fully vaccinated.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 289,716 Māori have received one dose of the vaccination and 140,473 have had their second.

  • Aucklanders have turned out in force this weekend to get vaccinated. Last Monday, the Prime Minister challenged as many people as possible in Tāmaki Makaurau to get their first dose. Over the last week, Auckland DHBs administered on average 15,375 first doses every day, and 8,800 second doses. This means 78% of eligible Aucklanders have now had their first dose. Just another 30,000 people in the city reaches 80% of first doses.

  • Heoi anō, every unvaccinated person opens the potential for a new chain of transmission to start so we need to keep going and get our rates up even higher. You can help by encouraging your friends and whānau (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • If you’re looking for a vaccination centre near you, you can check out Karawhiua.nz or the Healthpoint website.

  • The three vaccination buses launched last week had a successful start. From āpōpō, an additional two buses will be on the road. These will be operated by two of our Māori health providers, Manurewa Marae and Huakina Trust who have already developed outreach plans based on community feedback. A big mihi to these providers for getting out there to increase our vaccination rates, tēnā rawa atu koutou katoa.

17 September 2021


11 new community cases and over 7000 tests processed around Tāmaki Makaurau yesterday


Ko te whakamānawa nui ki te Atua Matua i te rangi, kia hora iho mai âna manaakitanga ki runga i a tātou katoa i tēnei wā, ā, haere nei te wā. As the Director of Public Health, Dr Caroline McElnay said earlier today, we are closing in on this outbreak and can be cautiously optimistic about the containment of it. This is great news, particularly for our whānau and kaimahi in Tāmaki Makaurau who have been in lock-down for over four weeks now. Heoi anō, we still have a responsibility to maintain our tikanga hauora and relevant Alert Level restrictions. Amidst the optimism, we must stay vigilant. The Delta variant is tricky and will fight back if we let. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu tātou katoa. We’re also nearing the end of Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, and I encourage each of you to continue using it and sharing it with others over the next week and into the future. Kia kaha tonu ki te kōrero i te reo Māori i ngā wā katoa, ki ngā tāngata katoa, ahakoa te aha.


11 new community cases in Aotearoa and an update on the truck-driver case

  • There are 11 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region. This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 1007, with 990 in Tāmaki Makaurau and 17 in Pōneke.

  • Of these cases, 549 are now deemed to have recovered, which is great news. This gives us an active total of 458.

  • As of late this morning, all but two of today’s community cases have been linked to known cases.

  • Regarding the truck-driver case announced yesterday, this case and a member of his household have now been transferred to a quarantine facility.

  • This case travelled in his work capacity to a number of supermarkets in Tāmaki Makaurau, Waikato, and the Bay of Plenty. We’ve been advised this case wore a mask and maintained physical distancing while working.

  • The first locations of interest related to this case are on the Ministry of Health website, these are in Mount Maunganui. We are expecting further sites in the Waikato to be put online today once confirmed.

  • If you have been at one of the locations of interest at the relevant time, please follow the advice on the Ministry’s website as it does vary depending on the nature of exposure at that location.

  • It’s important to note the supermarkets the truck-driver visited are not listed as locations of interest as they were delivery areas not accessible to the public. The company involved have immediately stood down staff who were in close proximity to the driver and have been assessed as being contacts.

Over 7000 tests processed yesterday across Tāmaki Makaurau

  • Yesterday, 7400 people in Tāmaki Makaurau took the opportunity to get tested with around 1710 tests taken from the seven suburbs of interest. That brings the total this week for those suburbs to 9200.

  • In the past seven days, more than 58,000 people have been tested across Tāmaki Makaurau and that’s a huge effort.

  • Around 15,000 tests were processed yesterday across the motu with a seven-day rolling average of just over 13,000.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, police have started checking permitted workers crossing Alert Level boundaries to check whether they’ve had a test in the past seven days. A number of vehicles were turned around at the boundary last night due to not having evidence of being tested. Nā reira, if you’re a permitted worker crossing an Alert Level boundary, please make sure to get a test before you cross the boundary. You must carry evidence of that test with you.

  • Heoi anō, our main message remains the same for this weekend, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, especially if you live in Tāmaki Makaurau, please call Healthline or your GP and ask about getting a test.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • Over 4.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered throughout Aotearoa as of today. This includes over three million first doses and 1.5 second doses.

  • Yesterday, 60,506 vaccines were administered across Aotearoa. Of these, 36,666 were first doses and 23,840 were second doses. While this is a small decrease from the previous day’s numbers, it’s still encouraging to see high rates of New Zealanders rolling up their sleeves to protect their communities.

  • Heoi anō, we still have some way to go with the Māori vaccination rollout. To date, 282,828 Māori have received one dose of the vaccination and 135,945 have received their second dose and are fully vaccinated.

  • As I said yesterday, vaccinations are critical in fighting the current outbreak and future outbreaks. Nā reira, please continue to encourage your friends and whānau (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • If you’re looking for a vaccine centre near you, check out Karawhiua.nz or the Healthpoint website.

16 September 2021


Over 3 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered throughout the motu


Kei ngā ringa atawhai o te motu, koutou e manaaki ana i te iwi Māori, tēnā rā koutou katoa. Tuatahi ake, I want to echo our Director-Generals mihi to all the kaimahi hauora in Tāmaki Makaurau who have working hard to support our whānau throughout Alert Level 4. I know this latest outbreak has been incredibly difficult, many of you have had to juggle whānau commitments while also working on the frontline. Kia mōhio mai, this doesn’t go unnoticed. Thank you so much for all you’ve done and continue to do for our people. Today, Cabinet met to consider the Alert Level 1 settings and what those might look for whānau. They’ve decided to keep Alert Level 1 the same and that’s because it’s always been for an environment where there is no risk of community transmission. However, while Tāmaki Makaurau is in higher Alert Levels, we’ll need to maintain a higher level of preparedness across the motu. We’ve see this already with the current Alert Level 2 settings which are stricter than what we’ve previously experienced. As Tāmaki Makaurau comes down in Alert Levels, the settings we experience across the rest of the country will be slightly eased. While final decisions will be made by Cabinet on Monday, I wanted to give you an update on the current thinking. I’ll also keep you updated as I find out more information.


13 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 13 new cases of COVID-19 in the community today. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region. This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 996, with 979 in Tāmaki Makaurau and 17 in Pōneke.

  • Of these cases, 460 are now deemed to have recovered, which is great news. This gives us an active total of 536.

  • As of late this morning, all but one of today’s community cases have been linked to known cases, with most being household contacts.

  • The remaining case is being interviewed today. This case presented to Middlemore Hospital without any COVID symptoms but was swabbed as a part of the wider testing they’re now undertaking at the hospital.

  • Another of the new cases today is a truck driver who travelled across the Tāmaki Makaurau boundary as part of their work to make deliveries. This driver is being interviewed by the Auckland Regional Public Health Unit to determine whether there are any locations of interest, and if there are, these will be uploaded to the Ministry of Health website.

  • The total number of cases that remain unlinked is 30, that’s a small decrease from yesterday. We will keep working with our public health units to investigate any unlinked cases and as this mahi continues, the total number of unlinked cases will fall.

  • There are 19 people in hospital across Tāmaki Makaurau today. Four of those are in ICU and they require ventilation. Kei te whakaaro tonu ahau ki ēnei tūroro me ō rātou whānau e noho pōuri ana.

Over 17,000 tests processed yesterday

  • Yesterday, there were 17,578 swabs processed around the motu. Of these, more than 9100 swabs were taken across Tāmaki Makaurau, which includes nearly 2500 tests of people from the seven suburbs of interest. In addition, around 2300 essential workers were swabbed.

  • Again, I want to mihi to the whānau in those suburbs of interest for getting tested this week.

  • The truck driver mentioned earlier was tested after isolating as a household contact of another case. This emphasises the importance of our approach to testing people travelling across the Tāmaki Makaurau boundary.

  • Kia mōhio mai, after 11.59pm this evening, all permitted workers who cross the Alert Level boundaries must be able to show proof they’ve had a test in the past seven days. This is in addition to the evidence they need to show they’re permitted to cross the boundary.

  • As this is surveillance testing, permitted workers who have these tests are not required to isolate or stand-down while waiting a test result.

  • Police will begin checking for this from midnight tonight, and those who are unable to provide the necessary evidence will be turned back.

  • The main message today remains the same, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, especially if you live in Tāmaki Makaurau, please call Healthline or your GP and ask about getting a test.

A new milestone in our COVID-19 vaccination rollout

  • Today, we hit another milestone in our rollout with three million doses delivered nationwide. This represents 70% of our eligible population which is great news. Ngā mihi nui to everyone who has helped get us there.

  • Yesterday, 62,782 vaccines were administered across Aotearoa. Of these, 39,775 were first doses and 23,007 were second doses.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 278,614 Māori have received one dose of the vaccination and 133,830 have received their second and are fully vaccinated. This means 48% of Māori have had one dose, and over 23% have had their second.

  • Vaccinations are incredibly helpful in fighting the current outbreak and future outbreaks. Nā reira, please continue to encourage your friends and whānau (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • If you’re looking for a vaccine centre near you, check out Karawhiua.nz or the Healthpoint website.

Three vaccine buses launched today in Tāmaki Makaurau

  • This morning, the first of our mobile vaccine buses were launched in Tāmaki Makaurau before heading out to parts of the city where vaccination numbers have been lower, or where people haven’t been able to access centres easily.

  • Three pahi were launched with one heading to the supermarkets along Lincoln Road in West Tāmaki Makaurau, one based at the Pukekohe Countdown, and another at the Papakura train station.

  • Another three pahi are being prepared today and will be deployed this week.

  • We’ll be looking to build up the fleet even further over the next week to take full advantage of the twelve vehicles being provided.

  • I want to mihi to our Māori and Pacific providers who are working closely with us to decide the best locations to send the pahi. Aku mihi nui ki a koutou katoa.

13 September 2021


COVID-19 Response Update - Tāmaki Makaurau to stay at Alert Level 4 for another week

E rere ana ngā mihi whakamānawa ki a koutou katoa e noho haumaru ana i ngā tōpito katoa o te motu, tēnā rā koutou. Today, Cabinet met to review the Alert Level settings for the country, and the Prime Minister announced these at this afternoon’s stand-up. To ensure we maintain the gains made over the past three weeks, Cabinet has decided to keep Tāmaki Makaurau in Alert Level 4 for an additional week until 11.59pm Tuesday 21 September, at which point Tāmaki Makaurau will shift to Alert Level 3. Cabinet will confirm this decision next Monday. The rest of the motu will stay at Alert Level 2 for an additional week, and these settings will be reviewed on Monday as well. My whakaaro continue to be with those of you in Tāmaki Makaurau. I know this latest announcement may be hard to hear given the sacrifices you’ve already made for the protection of our country. Heoi anō, this next week of Alert Level 4 gives us the best chance to cement that protection and stamp out COVID-19. Nā reira, kia kaha tonu koutou, kia māia, kia manawanui hoki.


For whānau living in Tāmaki Makaurau – Stay home, get tested, and get vaccinate

  • The next week will be critical in providing us with the additional reassurance we need before we can shift in Alert Levels.

  • Alongside active cluster management we are going to continue with focused testing in seven suburbs of interest, including Mount Eden, Mangere, Massey, Favona, Papatoetoe, Otara, and Manurewa. If you live in those areas, please remain vigilant for symptoms.

  • Testing in other suburbs may also be indicated in coming days and I’ll let you know if that’s the case.

  • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms please call Healthline or your health provider and ask about getting a test.

  • Please stick to your bubble and stay home as much as possible. Help reduce risk by having only one person travel to get essential items and kai. Even better if that person stays the same for each trip.

  • Please also book in for your vaccination if you haven’t already done so. We want as many Aucklanders as possible to have had their first dose by the end of the week. If you’ve booked your first vaccine but it’s not until October, jump online again, you may find more spots have opened for this week. Please take advantage of those.

  • COVID-19 has had a significant impact on how we live, and we know lockdowns can cause stress and anxiety, especially for whānau in Tāmaki Makaurau. Hei whakamaumahara, it’s okay to not be okay. The Ministry’s website has a range of tools and resources to support mental wellbeing. It can also tell you where to get more help if you need it.

  • Finally, the Unite Against COVID website has a list of financial support available for whānau and individuals.

33 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 33 new cases of COVID-19 in the community. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region.

  • This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 955, with 938 in Tāmaki Makaurau and 17 in Pōneke.

  • Of these cases, 372 are now deemed to have recovered, giving us an active total of 583.

  • There are 21 cases in hospital across Tāmaki Makaurau. Of these, four remain in intensive care.

  • The total number of unlinked cases currently sits at 27, one of which is from today’s cases. We will continue working with our public health units to investigate any unlinked cases and as this mahi continues, the total number of unlinked cases will fall.

  • While the numbers over the weekend have been, it’s encouraging to see that most of these cases have been expected. In fact, only one of today’s cases is yet to be linked.

  • Nā reira, while there is reason to be cautious, we shouldn’t be too concerned by this increase in numbers. The signs are currently good – lock-down is working, testing numbers remain high, and there are only a small number of unlinked cases still under investigation.

Update on the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out

  • Yesterday, 33,866 vaccines were administered across Aotearoa.

  • Of these 20,490 were first doses and 13,376 were second doses. This means 68% of eligible New Zealanders have received one dose, and 35% have received their second.

  • For the Māori roll-out, 265,875 Māori have received their first dose and 128,017 are fully vaccinated. So, 46% of our people have had one dose, and 22% are fully vaccinated.

  • I want to mihi to our kaumātua aged 65 and over. Just over 85% have had one dose of the vaccine, and 73% are fully vaccinated. This is a great example for the rest of our people, particularly our rangatahi, to follow.

  • Yesterday’s numbers are a significant drop from the day before, so it’s important we get the numbers back up by encouraging our whānau and friends (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and it’s free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

11 September 2021


23 new cases in the community


Kei aku whakatamarahi ki te whenua, aku whakateitei ki te rangi, tēnei te mihi mahana ki a koutou katoa. We’re now in the fourth weekend of the latest outbreak, and during this brief respite I hope you’re all taking time to rest, recuperate, and relax with your whānau. Given the intensity of responding to outbreaks, it’s important we take time when we can to recharge our batteries. Heoi anō, amidst the relaxation, it’s also important we keep up the good mahi we’ve doing over the past few weeks. We’ll be able to enjoy more freedom and less restrictions when we navigate our way out of this latest outbreak, and the only way to do that is by upholding our tikanga hauora and following the relevant Alert Level restrictions. Most importantly, stay home and get tested if you’re māuiui, get vaccinated, and tukua te aroha kia rere, be kind to one another.


23 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 23 new cases of COVID-19 in the community to announce today. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region.

  • This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 902, with 885 in Tāmaki Makaurau and 17 in Pōneke.

  • Of these community cases, 289 are now deemed to have recovered, giving us an active total of 613.

  • You’ll see from today’s numbers that there is a slight increase. As we’ve said previously, some volatility is likely at this stage as we expect some changes in the numbers as day five and day 12 tests are due, and we do further investigations of any new unlinked cases.

  • Nā reira, these numbers shouldn’t be of much concern, however, they are a strong reminder of the importance of our Alert Level restrictions.

  • The total number of unlinked cases currently sits at 36, nine of which are from today’s cases. We will continue working with our public health units to investigate any unlinked cases and as this mahi continues, the total number of unlinked cases will fall.

  • Nineteen cases are in Tāmaki Makaurau hospitals today. This is a drop from yesterday’s number, which is encouraging. Of those in hospital, four are in ICU and all of them require ventilation. My whakaaro continue to be with those who are māuiui and their whānau during this stressful time.

Over 64,000 vaccinations administered yesterday

  • Our COVID-19 vaccination rollout continues at pace with 64,775 vaccinations administered yesterday.

  • Of these 43,788 were first doses and 20,987 were second doses. This means 66% of eligible New Zealanders have received one dose, and 33% have received their second dose.

  • For the Māori roll-out, more than 260,000 Māori have received their first dose and over 125,000 are fully vaccinated. This means around one in five Māori are fully vaccinated.

  • Today’s numbers are slightly higher than yesterday’s, which is great to see. You can help further increase those numbers by encouraging your friends and whânau (aged 12 and over) to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and free. They can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • Hei whakamaumahara, we have enough vaccinations in the country to vaccinate all eligible New Zealanders at pace. So, now it’s up to us. Kia kaha rā tātou katoa.

Testing rates need to remain over the weekend

  • Yesterday, there were 15,241 tests processed across the motu, and of these, 7,196 swabs were taken across the Tāmaki Makaurau region.

  • As our Director-General said yesterday, it’s crucial we maintain high testing rates over the weekend. That’s because testing helps us determine whether there’s undetected community transmission or leakages out of Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Nā reira, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms (especially if you live Tāmaki Makaurau) please call Healthline or your health provider and ask about getting tested. There are plenty of testing sites all around the country. You can find a site near you on the Healthpoint website.

  • Thank you to everyone who has gone to get a test over the past few weeks. Thanks also to our kaimahi working hard on the frontline. E mihi ana ki a koutou katoa.

10 September 2021


11 new cases in the community and testing rates need to stay high over the weekend


Tēnā anō koutou katoa e ngā kākā tarahae o te iwi, nei a mihi whakamiha ka rere atu ki a koutou katoa. As we head into another weekend, it’s important we keep up the good mahi from the past few weeks. We can’t afford to be complacent; Delta’s shown us that if you give it an inch, it’ll take a mile. So, have a collective responsibility to maintain the gains we’ve made since the outbreak started, nā tō rourou, nā tōku rourou, ka ora ai te iwi, through your contribution and mine, our people will thrive. I know this weekend will be harder for our whānau in Tāmaki Makaurau who are still under Alert Level 4 restrictions and my whakaaro continue to be with you. If you feel at any point you aren’t coping, please reach out. Support is available to you and your whānau to help with all your needs. Ka mutu, severe weather warnings have been issued throughout the motu, nā reira, ahakoa kei hea koe, no matter where you are in the country, please stay safe.


11 new community cases in Aotearoa

  • There are 11 new cases of COVID-19 in the community to announce today. All of these are in the Tāmaki Makaurau region.

  • This brings the total number of community cases associated with this outbreak to 879, with 862 in Tāmaki Makaurau and 17 in Pōneke.

  • Of these community cases, 288 are now deemed to have recovered, giving us an active total of 591.

  • The total number of unlinked cases currently sits at 29, six of which are from today’s new cases. We will continue working with our public health units to investigate any unlinked cases and as this mahi continues, the total amount of unlinked cases will decrease.

  • Analysis of yesterday’s 13 community cases show all of these were contacts of other cases, and 12 were household contacts. We also know just one case was infectious in the community which is encouraging.

  • There are 27 people in Tāmaki Makaurau hospitals right now. Of these, four are in ICU and all of them require ventilation.

COVID-19 vaccination update

  • Our COVID-19 vaccination rollout continues at pace with 61,574 vaccinations administered yesterday.

  • Of these 46,070 were first doses and 15,504 were second doses. This means 66% of eligible New Zealanders have received one dose, and 33% have received their second dose.

  • For the Māori roll-out, more than 255,000 Māori have received their first dose and over 123,000 are fully vaccinated.

  • With just over one in five Māori fully vaccinated, it’s evident we still have some way to go.

  • Nā reira, please continue to encourage your friends and whānau to book in for their vaccinations as soon as possible. It’s safe and free. You can do this online or by calling 0800 28 29 26.

  • Again, I want to reassure you that we have enough vaccinations in the country to vaccinate all eligible New Zealanders at pace.

  • I also want to mihi to all our kaimahi in the DHBs and our Māori health providers for the work you’ve been doing to increase vaccination rates amongst Māori communities. Your dedication to our people has been an exemplar for the wider sector and you should all be proud of your mahi.

Testing rates need to remain high over the weekend

  • Yesterday, there were 14,181 tests processed across the motu, and of these, 7,974 swabs were taken across the Tāmaki Makaurau region.

  • Maintain high testing rates over the weekend is critical because it gives us reassurance and confidence that there isn’t widespread community transmission or leakages of the virus out of Tāmaki Makaurau.

  • Nā reira, the key message for today remains the same, if you have any COVID-19 symptoms(especially if you live Tāmaki Makaurau) please call Healthline or your health provider and ask about getting tested. There are plenty of testing sites available around the country. You can check out the Healthpoint website to find a site near you.

  • Thanks again to everyone who has gotten a test this week. Thanks also to our kaimahi working hard on the frontline to test New Zealanders. E mihi ana ki a koutou katoa.

  • We are widening the scope of surveillance testing. As part of that, invitations have been sent out to multiple employers of essential workers across Tāmaki Makaurau encouraging their kaimahi to be tested. Work is also underway to set up testing sites closer to the Tāmaki Makaurau boundary to ensure testing is as easy as possible for people crossing the Tāmaki Makaurau boundary.

  • Finally, last month we commenced the national roll-out of saliva testing in our border workforce and this morning we hit a milestone with our 1000th worker opting in for saliva testing. This is great news, and we are continuing to make this option more widely available, including for other essential workers. I’ll make sure to inform you of any further updates.

9 September 2021


13 new community cases and the vaccination rollout continues with enough vaccines for all eligible New Zealanders


Kei aku whatukura, kei aku māreikura, rau rangatira mā, tēnei te reo o te Manatū Hauora e mihi atu ana ki a koutou katoa. This time last week, we reported over three times the amount of new community cases we’re reporting today, and this is good news for our whānau. This shows our restrictions and tikanga hauora are working, and it’s our responsibility to k