No new COVID-19 cases in Taranaki
19 October 2020
Prompt testing of people who were considered close and casual contacts of a positive COVID-19 case from Auckland have so far seen negative results.
Taranaki DHB’s medical officer of health, Dr Jonathan Jarman, confirms four close contacts and nine casuals have been identified in New Plymouth and tested for COVID-19, following possible contact with a 27 year man who spent time working at Port Taranaki last week.
“The Public Health Unit (PHU) has worked swiftly to contact trace any people of concern and these people have all been tested. The people with the highest risk are self-isolating for 14 days. Others with lower levels of contact were sent home while waiting for the results of the test. Everyone else has been given appropriate advice if they develop symptoms”.
Taranaki DHB has increased staffing for all of the region’s testing centres and has made testing a priority for people who are considered close contacts, all border workers and anyone in New Plymouth who has COVID-19 symptoms.
Dr Jarman says “Our focus for testing is on the following three settings – Port Taranaki, the Devon Hotel and the Quest Apartments. The PHU has worked closely with each of these businesses to ensure contact tracing is thorough and that those involved are being kept well informed.
“It is fortunate that the man from Auckland with COVID-19 kept very much to himself during his time in New Plymouth, he only went to and from the hotels and the port and was travelling by himself in his own car. He has not reported going anywhere else of significance in our community”.
A pop up testing clinic was held at Port Taranaki for staff today, and weekly surveillance testing will continue on Wednesday as part of the strategy to detect any cases at the border and protect workers, their families, whānau and the wider Taranaki community.
Over 100 tests have been completed since Sunday afternoon and testing centres are prepared for the potential increase in people wanting to be swabbed.
Dr Jarman stresses the importance of testing for people with flu-like symptoms.
“This is the time to get tested to be sure. We have had a person with COVID-19 infection in Taranaki and now we need to make certain that it has not spread.”
For testing information please go to https://tdhb.org.nz/covid19/public.shtml#testing
For more information on the positive case please go to the Ministry of Health website www.health.govt.nz
Last updated: Monday, October 19, 2020