NZ Omicron Outbreak: Record 3297 Cases, 179 People in Hospital

Testing sites reach capacity. Image: NZ Herald.

Wednesday 23 February 2020. New Zealand registered a record 3,297 new community cases of Covid-19 today.

The Health Ministry confirmed 179 people, also a record, are in hospital including one person in intensive care, the Ministry of Health announced.

Of today’s community cases, 1,729 are in Auckland. The other cases are across Northland (40), Waikato (297), Bay of Plenty (157), Lakes (54), Hawke’s Bay (18), MidCentral (56), Whanganui (5), Taranaki (30), Tairāwhiti (16), Wairarapa (16), Capital and Coast (123), Hutt Valley (28), Nelson Marlborough (85), Canterbury (176), South Canterbury (7), the Southern (455) region and the West Coast (3).

There are now 21,648 active Covid-19 community cases with the seven-day rolling average at 2257.

However with testing sites reported to have reached capacity, the number of daily case could be higher, with many waiting up to 7 days to receive a text with their results.

In the last 24 hours, 27,550 tests have been processed. The rolling average for testing in New Zealand for the last seven days is 28,951.

According to the NZ Health Ministry there are 6.9m rapid antigen tests in the country.

The 179 people in hospital have an average age of 51. They are at North Shore (33), Middlemore (68), Auckland (58), Tauranga (4), Lakes (3), Waikato (8), Hutt Valley (2), Capital and Coast (1) and Canterbury (2) hospitals.

The current vaccination status of those in Auckland and Northland hospitals (Northern Region wards) is as follows:

  • Unvaccinated or not eligible: 19 cases/14.7 per cent;
  •  Partially immunised <7 days from second dose or have only received one dose: 4 cases/3.1 per cent
  • Fully vaccinated at least 7 days before being reported as a case: 64 cases/49.6 per cent;
  •  Unknown: 15 cases/11.6 per cent.

The Counties Manukau DHB population health director Gary Jackson says new modelling shows the peak of the Omicron outbreak in Auckland and Northland could reach 4000 daily cases if transmission is low, or 9000 if it is not.

Image: NZ Herald.
Testing sites reach capacity. Image: NZ Herald.