Covid-19 coronavirus: Health Ministry reveals new case numbers, update on UK strain

The Ministry of Health will this afternoon reveal how many new cases of Covid-19 there are in New Zealand.

Officials will also provide an update on any new cases of the new, highly infectious, strain of the virus which has taken hold in the UK.

The Ministry yesterday reported there had been 31 new cases of Covid-19 in managed isolation since Thursday.

“The number of cases reinforces the need for ongoing vigilance at the border, as Covid-19 continues to accelerate overseas,” the Ministry said yesterday.

Although there are still no community cases of the virus, there were 19 cases at the border which were linked to the new rapidly-spreading UK Covid strain.

One case is linked to the South African strain.

“Most of these people have come into New Zealand from the UK, via the UAE, Qatar or Singapore,” the ministry said.

The new strain has forced the UK back into lockdown, amid fears its health system will become overwhelmed.

On Saturday, the British government reported the number of confirmed deaths had reached 80,868 – the highest in Europe and the world’s fifth-highest pandemic death toll.

A day earlier, the country’s daily reported deaths had hit a record high of 1325.

The new and more contagious UK variant can be passed on easier than other strains of the virus.

However, there was no evidence at this stage that the length of the infection period was any different to any other variant of Covid-19 or that it made people sicker, a ministry statement said.

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