No new community cases; 3 cases of COVID-19 in managed isolation
24/03/2021 2:19:34 p.m.

There are no new community cases to report today. There are 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 to report in managed isolation.

Border-related case 

Whole genome sequencing has been completed for the positive COVID-19 case in a worker at the Grand Millennium Hotel managed isolation facility.

This case, known as Case A, was first reported on Monday and the results tell us it is B.1.1.7, the variant first discovered in the UK. 

The sequencing for Case A is a close match to that of a returnee who was staying at the facility from 13 – 15 March. The returnee’s infection had been picked up in routine day zero testing and they were then moved to the Auckland quarantine facility.  This provides reassurance that the current case was infected at the workplace, rather than in the community. 

The retest results for Case A’s household contact were returned overnight. They were negative for the PCR test and negative for blood serology. 

Their earlier weak positive followed by a negative result could indicate an early and fleeting mild infection that has now passed, or it could be a false positive.  

The household contact will remain ‘under investigation’ and be managed as a close contact with repeat testing scheduled. They are not currently considered to be a confirmed case and are highly unlikely to have been able to infect anyone else.  

Location of interest 
Our current assessment is that the risk to the public is low. At this stage there remains only one location of interest – the Countdown Mt Roskill between 3pm and 3.15pm on Saturday 20 March.  

Grand Mercure Day 12 Case
Auckland public health officials have reviewed 23 Grand Mercure returnees who were on one of two buses to an exercise area with a fellow guest whose test returned positive for COVID-19 while they were out exercising. 

As a precaution we are extending the managed isolation stay for these people.  

Some of these people will now be managed as close contacts and will be required to stay in managed isolation for an additional 14 days from the date of the potential exposure event. Others are required to stay for an additional 5 days from the date of the potential exposure event. This will provide us with assurance that there is no risk to the public.

We acknowledge the disruption this will cause to these people and thank them for their patience.

Testing information
Testing remains steady across the current Auckland testing sites. These will continue to assess whether they need to increase capacity at these sites or stand up new sites.
On Tuesday, 6,436 tests were processed. The seven-day rolling average up to yesterday is 4,493 tests processed.

The total number of tests processed by laboratories to date is 1,861,752.

For up-to-date information on testing locations in Auckland, visit and for all testing locations nationwide, visit the Healthpoint website.

NZ COVID Tracer now has 2,762,129 registered users.

Poster scans have reached 230,443,004 and users have created 8,738,480 manual diary entries. There have been 944,719 scans in the last 24 hours to 1pm yesterday.

Please scan QR codes wherever you go and turn on Bluetooth tracing in the app dashboard if you haven’t already done so.

COVID-19 reporting
There are 3 new positive cases of COVID-19 to report in managed isolation. The seven-day rolling average of new cases detected at the border is 5.

The number of previously reported cases that have now recovered is 3. The total number of active cases in New Zealand today is 67.

Our total number of confirmed cases is 2,114.

Since 1 January 2021, there have been 41 historical cases, out of a total of 302 cases.
New border case details
Arrival date    From          Via                            Positive test day/reason     Managed isolation/quarantine location
21 Mar           Ethiopia                                       Around day 1 / routine               Auckland
21 Mar           India      United Arab Emirates    Around day 1 / routine testing    Auckland
22 Mar           Indonesia Singapore                   Around day 0 / routine testing    Auckland