Many lineages, including B.1.1.1, have a wide global spread. • The origins of this cluster remain under investigation. They both succumbed to the infection on Friday. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no COVID-19 Latest. There are now 87 confirmed cases in the new Auckland cluster. or, by David Welch, The Conversation. Share page. We can understand the extent of the spread using GISAID, the global database in which viral genomes are shared. The Auckland August outbreak exhibited some important differences to the March/April outbreak. Without rapid genome sequencing, contact tracers would have spent considerable effort looking for a link to the known cluster. Auckland is … First, it identified a new case without links to the current community cluster. Genomic tests suggested the strain originated in the UK or Australia. Covid-19: False negative case could’ve started Auckland August cluster – experts. The four new community cases are linked to the wider Auckland August cluster and are epidemiologically linked to the Mt Roskill Evangelical Church “mini-cluster”. But even so, recent transmission across the border is clearly more likely, given the presence of this strain around the world and the absence of any intermediate cases to link NZ's first and second waves. After 102 days of no new Covid-19 cases in the community, suddenly four members of a South Auckland family had tested positive. After 102 days of no new Covid-19 cases in the community, suddenly four members of a South Auckland family had tested positive. Instead, their work is now focused on finding out how the worker got infected and whether there are any intermediate cases. But despite our rapidly improving knowledge, we still don't know how and where the current outbreak started. As of today, there are … A month ago New Zealand was delivered the news no one wanted to hear. The prime minister said at a press conference that 179 cases have been linked to … Auckland's dire August - the cluster that changed everything A month ago New Zealand was delivered the news no one wanted to hear. 14 August 2020. There are three new cases of COVID detected in people in managed isolation today. Either the second wave is due to a recent border incursion from a country where this viral lineage has been transmitted. Half the Covid deaths remain linked to the Rosewood rest home cluster in Christchurch where 12 residents died. By 20 April, there were less than ten cases reported per day and after 1 May less than five per day. Members of … By Tuesday, sequencing results showed this case was not part of the wider cluster, but rather that the genetic sequences matched those from a US returnee who had stayed at the Rydges before testing positive and being moved into quarantine. Over the past month hospitals have treated a handful of patients needing ward and intensive care. Households connected to the Mt Roskill Evangelical Fellowship have suffered the highest toll, with 33 people falling ill to date. And for the first time the number of youth and children suffering from the virus outstrip those in older age groups, making up almost a third of all positive cases. The sequencing technology has shown its value in three distinct ways since this new outbreak was confirmed last week. Auckland August cluster: • 177 cases total, of which 55 are active. The content is provided for information purposes only. “Improved testing and contact tracing capacity mean that since the Auckland August cluster, we’ve had four outbreaks which we have successfully managed without having to change alert levels. One death. So far, the "Auckland August cluster", as it's known, has seen 146 people become infected, including five new daily cases confirmed on September 1. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern reacts during a press conference in Wellington, New Zealand, Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. Today a household contact of a confirmed case connected to the sub-cluster tested positive. New systems to understand the epidemic have swung into action and quickly proved their worth. With no new COVID-19 cases in two incubation periods, the Ministry of Health is planning to close the Auckland August cluster. It is providing greater certainty in identifying clusters and helps focus the investigations of contact tracers. Made possible by. But the fact this has now been genomically linked to the main Auckland cluster means it is unlikely to be part of a much bigger outbreak. Scientists have turned the complex tale of Auckland's August Covid-19 cluster into a fascinating interactive, threading together its cases with genomic data. 3 new imported cases, none in the community. Within weeks the cluster earmarked as the Auckland August cluster had swollen to become the single largest connected group of Covid-19 victims in our country with 159 men, women and children testing positive. Genome sequencing proves useful to understand the cluster. Your email address is used only to let the recipient know who sent the email. Thank you for taking your time to send in your valued opinion to Science X editors. Until the cluster was discovered Tuesday, New Zealand had gone 102 days without infections spreading in … Genomically linked to Auckland August cluster. Science X Daily and the Weekly Email Newsletter are free features that allow you to receive your favorite sci-tech news updates in your email inbox, Follow the latest news on the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, Study explores the effects of morning weather on people's mood and wellbeing at work, Biotin, mitochondria, and dementia: Research reveals a connection, Study explores the effects of immune responses on the aging brain, Link found between self-control in childhood and success later in life, Opening a new door into kinder, gentler therapies for chronic inflammation. Within weeks the cluster earmarked as the Auckland August cluster … Despite additional testing of all border workers and swabs from cool store surfaces, the origin still has not been found. After 102 days of no new Covid-19 cases in the community, suddenly four members of a South Auckland family had tested positive. Science reporter Jamie Morton talked to Dr James Hadfield , a Wanaka-based phylogeneticist with Seattle's Bedford Lab, about what we've learned - and the three likely explanations for the mystery outbreak. The first case in this sub-cluster was reported on August 28, and the most recent case was reported … Since August 11 when a finance company on Dominion Rd and a cool store in Mt Wellington were identified as workplaces of concern, 3,224 people have been identified as close contacts of cases. Let's tackle each in turn, starting with the recent border incursion theory. So far, genomics has given us a lot of valuable information about New Zealand's current round of infections. Or, alternatively, it is the result of ongoing transmission in New Zealand starting from the pair identified in April. Three months ago, during the Auckland August coronavirus cluster, the Government announced 500 more Defence personnel would be deployed to managed … We estimated that it was highly likely that the Auckland August cluster was eliminated by October 5 before Auckland returned to Alert Level 1 on October 7. Both men had battled for their lives in intensive care units at Middlemore and Auckland City hospitals. But a new cluster emerged in Auckland in August, forcing the city of 1.5 million into lockdown for almost three weeks. New Zealand’s deputy prime minister has said a “breach” in quarantine was responsible for the cluster of Covid-19 cases that has forced Auckland to re-enter strict lockdown for three days. Have authorities given up on finding out how the Auckland August cluster started? Your feedback will go directly to Science X editors. - NZ Herald, Covid 19 coronavirus: Could the Auckland cluster flare up again? The outbreak has grown to 30 people and extended beyond Auckland for the first time. All are in quarantine, along with some of their close contacts. Whatever the source, we can take heart in New Zealand's response to this first known community transmission since the original epidemic. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Five new Covid-19 cases in NZ today, Auckland August cluster closed. - NZ Herald, Covid 19 coronavirus: 'Most likely weeks' before Auckland reaches tail of cluster - NZ Herald, Covid 19 Coronavirus: Auckland community cluster's infectious creep - NZ Herald, Insurance Council defends skyrocketing Wellington premiums, Chilled transmission: Research shows how long virus lasts on food, TO READ THE HERALD'S FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE CLICK HERE. False negative case could've started Auckland August cluster ... An outbreak like the Auckland cluster, which infected 179 people, could happen again through a false negative – where a person returns a negative test result, even though they are infected. 30 August Prime Minister Ardern confirmed that Auckland would enter into what she was coining ‘Alert Level 2.5’ at 11.59pm that night, ending the regional lockdown, with the rest of the country remaining at Alert level 2. This site uses cookies to assist with navigation, analyse your use of our services, and provide content from third parties. How New Zealand went 'hard and early' to beat Covid-19 It indicates the current cluster comes from the so-called B.1.1.1 lineage, most frequently documented in the UK but more recently found in Europe, Australia and South Africa. But with different countries having radically different sequencing efforts (of the 81,000 genomes on GISAID, 35,000 are from the UK alone), finding a link to a country could merely indicate that country has done lots of sequencing. By NICK PERRY August 14, 2020 GMT. Both were already in isolation. PCR tests shouldn't be relied on by themselves. A person who tested negative for Covid-19 despite carrying the virus could’ve started the August Auckland Covid-19 cluster, while further cases could be moving undetected through the border, public health experts say. October 8, 2020. Auckland's lockdown will continue until 11.59pm on Wednesday August 26, with the rest of the country under looser Level 2 rules until the same time, although a review of the decision will take place in a week's time on August 21. This lineage has been seen once before in New Zealand, in a pair of cases in mid-April who were in managed isolation in Auckland. There are five new Covid-19 cases in New Zealand today, four in managed isolation and one in the community which was revealed last night. Neither your address nor the recipient's address will be used for any other purpose. Compounding the cluster's spread is the infection through churches - at least five different congregations affecting hundreds of families across south and central Auckland. Four new cases of Covid-19: two linked to Auckland August cluster, two imported 10/09/2020. Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield says all the new cases are in quarantine. Te Hiko, aged in his 50s, is the youngest person to die from coronavirus in New Zealand. Two cases are imported. You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details to third parties. The prime minister said at a press conference that 179 cases have been linked to a cluster that emerged in August in Auckland. Even testing twice (currently on days three and 12 of quarantine) is expected to miss at least 4% of cases, based on a false negative rate that is at best 20%. Just days out before the region's alert level was to step down a notch, every student and teacher at the large central Auckland high school were asked to get a test before classes recommenced. You can be assured our editors closely monitor every feedback sent and will take appropriate actions. The origins of this cluster remain under investigation. This allows health authorities to infer a connection between cases or pinpoint potential sources of infection much more promptly than before. The Americold warehouse at Mount Wellington, Auckland, is … They were distinguished physician, author and former Cook Islands prime minister Dr Joe Williams and Americold cool store team leader and father of four Alan Te Hiko. The Ministry says one person remains on a ward in Middlemore hospital with COVID-19 today. New cases linked to the church are still emerging. However, in scenarios that did not lead to elimination, case numbers grew rapidly in the absence of Alert Level 3 restrictions. There are now 87 confirmed cases in the new Auckland cluster. By Susan Strongman, RNZ As of today, there are 177 cases of Covid-19 associated with the Auckland August Cluster. There are now 1425 cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand from both imported and community spread. Despite drastic measures to halt travel in and out of the Auckland region, and severe personal movement and gathering restrictions, the tally surpassed the earlier Bluff wedding and Marist College clusters that had stopped at 98 and 96 respectively. Genome sequencing—mapping the genetic sequences of the virus from confirmed COVID-19 cases in a bid to track its spread—is now an integral part of New Zealand's coronavirus response. But the theory also depends on some unlikely assumptions: that the infection leaked from managed isolation, was transmitted undetected for about 15 generations until finally being found, and mutated fairly slowly over that period. Sequencing of viral genomes has become part of the pipeline to aid contact tracing. Since the outbreak emerged the Health Ministry has dubbed it a mini cluster, with confirmed genomic and suspected epidemiological links to the Auckland outbreak. The earliest known case in the current wave has been pinpointed to a worker at an Americold cool store in Mt Wellington who fell ill on July 31. Copy link. However, it has yielded some clues. SIGN UP TO OUR DAILY NEWSLETTERS HERE. One death. They were all females, including a primary-age child, two women in their 20s and one aged 60-69 years. “Improved testing and contact tracing capacity mean that since the Auckland August cluster, we’ve had four outbreaks which we have successfully managed without having to change alert levels. This document is subject to copyright. The origins of this cluster remain under investigation. Through genomic testing, we know that all the sub-clusters are linked to the Auckland August cluster - but we don't know how the virus was transmitted from a person in the Auckland August cluster to the first person to be infected within each sub-cluster. Ministry of Health Covid-19 update October 8, 2020 There are two new cases of Covid-19 to report from managed isolation in New Zealand today. "The Auckland August cluster will officially close when there have been no new cases for two incubation periods from when all cases complete isolation." We have seen this lineage only once before in New Zealand, in a pair of cases in mid-April who were in managed isolation in Auckland. By Susan Strongman, RNZ As of today, there are 177 cases of Covid-19 associated with the Auckland August Cluster. Genomic evidence can tell us whether any of those contacts who subsequently test positive are indeed part of the same cluster, or whether they were infected elsewhere. The current number of active cases within the cluster is 55. Last week the director general of health, Dr Ashley Bloomfield, said they had not yet given up on finding the cause of the new strain sweeping through Auckland and the Waikato paper mill township of Tokoroa. close. When Williams was first admitted to hospital just days after Auckland moved to alert level 3 health authorities said the 82-year-old had been treating people at his Mt Wellington practice, located near the Americold cold store, right up to when he fell ill. Of those 3,199 have been contacted and put into self-isolation. Auckland August cluster: 177 cases total, of which 55 are active. In August, Auckland entered a second three-week lockdown after a cluster of more than 100 infected people developed in the city’s south. Talking about his new role, he says he is under no illusions about the scale and importance of it. Through genomic testing, we know that all the sub-clusters are linked to the Auckland August cluster - but we don't know how the virus was transmitted from a person in the Auckland August cluster to the first person to be infected within each sub-cluster. Tests have returned negative from classmates and teachers. STAY IN THE KNOW. Police hunt man after restaurant owner seriously injured in attack, Local Focus: Speed radar in Tauranga Harbour targeting jetskiers, Water price hikes: Goff says gradual changes preferable, Mt Albert cafe burglary breakthrough: Man arrested, items recovered, 'Corpse flower' bloom to cause a stink around the country in January, Air NZ grounds flights of pets between NZ and US, 'Extremely traumatic': Family of shark attack victim grief-stricken, autopsy held today. Here are some details on what authorities have called the ‘Auckland August cluster’. 27 August Seven new cases confirmed (six from the known South Auckland cluster, one in managed isolation at the border), bringing active cases to 126. 15 testing centres are opened across Auckland, and testing centres have opened in Rotorua and Taupo (due to the family having travelled there on holiday). Yesterday there were four cases linked to the central Auckland congregation. The outbreak has grown to 30 people and extended beyond Auckland for the first time. By The Right Monk on December 17, 2020. Auckland August cluster: 177 cases total, of which 55 are active. The Auckland cluster is now the largest in NZ's Covid-19 history, Bloomfield said. This sounds very unlike the virulent, fast-spreading virus we think we know, although it's also true the initial stages of growth of an outbreak can be slow. Neither can we rule out the possibility that a case in managed isolation or elsewhere at the border was not detected. Auckland August COVID cluster to close soon. In contrast to the first outbreak, during which only 25 of the more than 1,000 positive samples had been genetically sequenced by mid-April, genome sequencing results are now available overnight, and sometimes even on the same day. With hundreds gathering for a wedding and three services earlier this month health officials appealed on August 27 for anyone who had been in any of the gatherings to watch for symptoms. There are three new cases of COVID detected in people in managed isolation today. All in Auckland. Meanwhile, five of the previous seven clusters have continued to grow. Indeed, at the current time, the ‘Auckland August cluster’ is known to involve a further 178 cases, that are either epidemiologically or phylogenetically linked to the August 11 index case. This usually indicates a low viral load (and low level of infectiousness), but it does not rule out transmission. On Monday, Ardern announced that New Zealand's latest COVID-19 cluster is "under control." The resulting sequences will be useful to science well beyond the immediate response, as we seek to develop a deeper understanding of this virus, and epidemics more generally. Then last week the fast-growing city-wide cluster that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern warned would have a long tail took a deadly turn, claiming the lives of two men in 24 hours. Daily science news on research developments and the latest scientific innovations, The latest engineering, electronics and technology advances, The most comprehensive sci-tech news coverage on the web. About sharing. We have seen this lineage only once before in New Zealand, in … Five new Covid-19 cases in NZ today, Auckland August cluster closed 2:28 pm on 3 November 2020 There are five new Covid-19 cases in New Zealand today, four in managed isolation and one in the community which was revealed last night. With a close genomic match found, we can't completely dismiss this possibility. A maintenance worker at the Rydges Hotel managed isolation facility tested positive on Sunday. With no new COVID-19 cases in two incubation periods, the Ministry of Health is planning to close the Auckland August cluster. Ports 'won't change position' on foreign crew COVID-19 rules, despite Health Minister's request. Both the community cases were linked to the Auckland August cluster - one was a close contact of an existing confirmed case that has been epidemiologically linked to the cluster. Covid 19 coronavirus: What is a significant cluster? Auckland August COVID cluster to close soon. Read the original article. Ministry of Health figures show 62 per cent of those in the Auckland August cluster are Pacific people. This means Auckland will remain at level three and New Zealand will remain at level two until Wednesday August 26, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed at a press conference this afternoon. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern reacts during a press conference in Wellington, New Zealand, Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. But it hasn't established the ultimate source of this second-wave outbreak. Home Tags Auckland August cluster. Few people from Auckland's August cluster have spoken publicly and the family wants to stay anonymous. of the Auckland region was restricted. Get weekly and/or daily updates delivered to your inbox. We provide estimates of the effective reproduction number, the probability of elimination, the effectiveness of contact tracing, and the likelihood of spread of the cluster beyond Auckland during this period. “At the same time, we know the virus is continuing to rage offshore and despite our best efforts, there’s always the possibility of further community cases here. In a statement released this afternoon, the Ministry reports there are three new cases of COVID-19 to report from managed isolation in New Zealand today. At its height 11 people were treated in hospital on August 28 across Auckland and Waikato. Get the monthly weather forecast for Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand, including daily high/low, historical averages, to help you plan ahead. Next, let's look at the possibility of ongoing transmission in NZ since the first outbreak. All are in quarantine, along with some of their close contacts. File photo. "The source of the Auckland August cluster remains under investigation, and we may never know where it came from," Bloomfield said. Auckland Covid cluster caused by quarantine breach, says Winston Peters Information on outbreak in New Zealand city from trusted source, says deputy PM Coronavirus – latest updates Second, genome sequencing has also shown that all other cases so far are part of a single cluster. August 25, 2020. A class of 30 pupils at Otahuhu Primary were forced to self-isolate for two weeks after a parent spent time in the class the day before Auckland's mini-lockdown on August 12. After 102 days of no new Covid-19 cases in the community, suddenly four members of a South Auckland family had tested positive. This sparked a new outbreak, dubbed the Auckland August cluster. 13 August 13 new confirmed cases in New Zealand, 1 in managed isolation from an arrival from overseas, and 12 related to the family cluster announced on 11 August. Ideally, we would accurately calculate the likelihood of each scenario. Third, there were a few cases for which contact tracing produced only uncertain links between people, but sequencing confirmed they were part of the same cluster. Contact tracing casts a broad net. Test results of one of the cases under investigation will be genome sequenced today as an epidemiological link couldn't be found. While new cases are expected to continue to arrive in New Zealand from returnees, a combination of managed isolation and compulsory testing on day 12 is being lauded as successful keeping potential community transmission in check at the border. Military managed isolation sleaze: soldiers sent packing for inappropriate conduct stuff.co.nz - GEORGE BLOCK. Even trying to determine the country of origin is hard. Around 40% of cases found in managed facilities have no available genome sequence because the sample contains too little viral material. The cluster that sent Auckland into lockdown and the rest of the country into Stage 2 restrictions has now grown to 17, including four children aged between one and 19. If a known case has visited a school, church or large workplace, many hundreds of people may need to be tested. How the virus spread within the family The teens caught the … It has now overtaken the Bluff wedding cluster which was linked to 98 cases earlier this year. The sprawling city-wide cluster has also affected Auckland schools, with two positive cases at Mt Albert Grammar. The largest, a cluster of cases linked to students and staff at Auckland's Marist College, has now swelled to 48. The Auckland August cluster belongs to a lineage that is in multiple continents around around the world. Another man connected to the August Auckland cluster also died on Friday at Middlemore Hospital. A month on, where the first person became sick still remains a mystery. Minister for Covid-19 Response Chris Hipkins says the Auckland August cluster is now closed. The Auckland August cluster belongs to a lineage that is in multiple continents around around the world. The Bluff cluster involves eight cases linked to a wedding held there, and the Marlborough cluster of six cases has been connected to an Alzheimer's support group. The person had not travelled overseas or had knowingly been in contact with a Covid-positive person. Throughout, the confirmed cases have outnumbered the probable cases. This was mostly expected based on established physical links, but the genetic confirmation is nevertheless valuable. Other schools including Glamorgan School on the North Shore, Avondale College, Southern Cross Campus and Taeaofou I Puaseisei Preschool in Mangere East have all had a pupil test positive. Tag: Auckland August cluster. To date 17 children under 9 and 34 aged between 10 and 19 have Covid-19. The source may be among one of these cases. They became the 23rd and 24th victims of the virus since it came to our shores in February, turning this year on its head. An approach that combines genomic data with data on all international arrivals could be more fruitful. There was a resurgence of community transmission in August and September 2020 associated with the Auckland August cluster. So far, the "Auckland August cluster", as it's known, has seen 146 people become infected, including five new daily cases confirmed on September 1. October 7, Auckland returned to Alert Level 1, having successfully contained and most probably eliminated the ‘Auckland August cluster’. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Privacy Policy A further 21 per cent are Māori. New Zealand's government on Friday extended a lockdown of its largest city Auckland for another 12 days as it tries to stamp out its first domestic coronavirus outbreak in more than three months. And staff at Auckland 's Marist College, has now swelled to 48 feedback will go directly to Science editors! People in managed isolation facility tested positive isolation or elsewhere at the border was not detected children 9... Region was restricted cluster and are epidemiologically linked to the March/April outbreak effort looking for a link to the are. Had battled for their lives in intensive care close the Auckland August.... Valued opinion to Science X editors tests should n't be found put into.... `` under control. case connected to the known cluster distinct ways since this new outbreak, the. Changed everything a month on, where the first time position ' on crew... Intermediate cases travelled overseas or had knowingly been in contact with a person! That a case in managed isolation today month on, where the current number active... Sick still remains a mystery reproduced without the written permission or had been. 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