13,606 new Covid cases: 505 in the south

Feb 26, 2022

From the Ministry of Health:


  • Seven day rolling average of community cases (PCR): 5,078
  • Number of new community cases: 13,606
  • Number of new community cases (PCR): 2,613
  • Number of new community cases (RAT): 10,993
  • Location of new community cases (PCR & RAT): Northland (218), Auckland (9,262), Waikato (1,154), Bay of Plenty (690), Lakes (185), Hawke’s Bay (106), MidCentral (123), Whanganui (28), Taranaki (52), Tairāwhiti (48), Wairarapa (18), Capital and Coast (413), Hutt Valley (130), Nelson Marlborough (176), Canterbury (469), South Canterbury (20), Southern (505), West Coast (3); Unknown (6)
  • Number of new cases identified at the border: 6
  • Location of origin of border cases: Full travel history not obtained (6)
  • Number of active community cases (total): 52,808 (cases identified in the past 21 days and not yet classified as recovered) 
  • Confirmed cases (total): 70,652

* Please note, the Ministry of Health’s daily reported cases may differ slightly from those reported at a DHB or local public health unit level. This is because of different reporting cut off times and the assignment of cases between regions, for example when a case is tested outside their usual region of residence. Total numbers will always be the formal daily case tally as reported to the WHO.

The growth in hospitalisations and patients in ICU is not unexpected, has been planned for and is another reminder that vaccination is our best defence against COVID-19.

With cases escalating in the community the Ministry of Health is urging all New Zealanders who are due their booster to get it as soon as possible in order to reduce your chance of serious illness and hospitalisation.

This means a highly boosted New Zealand will help ensure there is capacity in our health system for anyone who needs care.

31,217 booster doses were administered yesterday, but 30.5% of people who are currently due their booster have not yet had it. We urge those people to make a plan to get boosted as soon as they can.

We are also beginning to see people who have attended the protest at Parliament, a location of interest and potential super spreader event, showing up in hospitals around the country after returning home. We advise all those currently at the protest, or who have been at the protest, who are displaying cold and flu symptoms to get a test and isolate until they receive their result.

Rapid Antigen Testing

As the Omicron outbreak grows, RATs are now used as the primary test at all community testing centres and by GPs for diagnostic purposes. They will make the decision on which test is most appropriate for you. PCR testing is being reserved for those people who most need it.

The Ministry of Health advises people to only get tested if they have symptoms or have been directed to do so by a health professional.

Please do not seek testing if you are well as this delays testing for people who are unwell.

Please be patient with staff at testing centres, and GP clinics. They are doing their best to cope with high demand for testing.

People who use a RAT will get their results within 20 minutes, which will help identify cases sooner, reduce testing wait times and minimise disruption to business and ensure critical services and infrastructure workforce can continue operating.

It is very important to the overall response that people self-report positive results for RATs through My Covid Record, so we understand the size of the outbreak.

We’d like to thank the thousands of people who have been tested and already self-reported positive RAT results.


For most people, including children, they will be able to recover from COVID-19 at home, with their family or others they live with, like they normally would with a cold or flu.

If you or your child start to feel worse, please stay at home and call your GP or Healthline on 0800 358 5453.  All GP and urgent care clinic appointments for COVID-19 are free.

If you or a family member becomes very unwell, such as like having difficulty breathing or chest pains, call 111 immediately. The ambulance will be free.

Hospital emergency departments are very busy, so please only go if it’s an emergency.


Under Phase 3 of the Omicron response there is no requirement for non-critical workers to have a COVID-19 test before they come to work, whether a RAT or PCR.  Employers who are not part of the Close Contact Exemption Scheme, are reminded that they should not be requesting this of their non-critical workers.

COVID-19 vaccine update

Vaccinations administered in New Zealand  

  • Vaccines administered to date: 4,018,841 first doses; 3,958,058 second doses; 33,324 third primary doses; 2,305,104 booster doses: 236,285 paediatric first doses and 2,702 paediatric second doses 
  • Vaccines administered yesterday: 445 first doses; 1,167 second doses; 146 third primary doses; 31,217 booster doses; 2,263 paediatric first doses and 285 paediatric second doses 

People vaccinated (including those vaccinated overseas)*

  • All Ethnicities (percentage of eligible people aged 12+): 4,062,314 first dose (96.5%); 3,999,932 second dose (95%), 2,306,762 boosted (69.5% of those eligible) 
  • Māori (percentage of eligible people aged 12+): 518,899 first dose (90.9%); 498,008 second dose (87.2%), 194,470 boosted (58.5% of those eligible) 
  • Pacific Peoples (percentage of eligible people aged 12+): 280,531 first dose (97.9%); 274,384 second dose (95.7%), 116,338 boosted (56.3% of those eligible) 
  • 5 to 11-year-olds all ethnicities: 236,202 first dose (49.6%); 2,712 second dose (0.6%) 
  • 5 to 11-year-olds - Māori: 34,530 first dose (29.9%); 441 second dose (0.4%) 
  • 5 to 11-year-olds - Pacific Peoples: 20,520 first dose (41.5%); 371 second dose (0.8%) 

*Note, that the number for “people vaccinated” differs slightly from “vaccines administered” as it includes those that have been vaccinated overseas.

Vaccination rates for all DHBs (percentage of eligible people aged 12 +)**

  • Northland DHB: first dose (90.3%); second dose (87.8%); boosted (68.2%) 
  • Auckland Metro DHB: first dose (97.3%); second dose (96.1%); boosted (66.4%) 
  • Waikato DHB: first dose (95.3%); second dose (93.5%); boosted (65.9%) 
  • Bay of Plenty DHB: first dose (95.3%); second dose (93.3%); boosted (66.7%) 
  • Lakes DHB: first dose (93.6%); second dose (91.4%); boosted (67.3%) 
  • MidCentral DHB: first dose (96.8%); second dose (95.1%); boosted (72.1%) 
  • Tairāwhiti DHB: first dose (93.4%); second dose (90.7%); boosted (67.9%) 
  • Whanganui DHB: first dose (92.4%); second dose (90.4%); boosted (72.7%) 
  • Hawke’s Bay DHB: first dose (97.2%); second dose (95.1%); boosted (70.4%) 
  • Taranaki DHB: first dose (94.8%); second dose (93.1%); boosted (67%) 
  • Wairarapa DHB: first dose (96.7%); second dose (95%); boosted (74.2%) 
  • Capital & Coast DHB: first dose (98.7%); second dose (97.8%); boosted (77.2%) 
  • Hutt Valley DHB: first dose (96.9%); second dose (95.6%); boosted (73.9%) 
  • Nelson Marlborough DHB: first dose (96.8%); second dose (95.3%); boosted (75.6%) 
  • West Coast DHB: first dose (93.1%); second dose (91.1%); boosted (73.3%) 
  • Canterbury DHB: first dose (99.8%); second dose (98.6%); boosted (71.5%) 
  • South Canterbury DHB: first dose (95.4%); second dose (94.1%); boosted (74.5%) 
  • Southern DHB: first dose (97.9%); second dose (96.6%); boosted (73.9%)

**First and second dose percentages are for those 12+. Booster dose percentages are for 18+ who have become eligible three months after having their second dose.


  • Cases in hospital: total number 263: Northland: 1; North Shore: 44; Middlemore: 89; Auckland: 92; Tauranga: 8; Taranaki: 3; Waikato: 26
  • Average age of current hospitalisations: 54
  • Cases in ICU or HDU: 5
  • Vaccination status of current hospitalisations (Northern Region only, excluding Emergency Departments): Unvaccinated or not eligible (23 cases / 11.8%); partially immunised <7 days from second dose or have only received one dose (3 cases / 1.5%); fully vaccinated at least 7 days before being reported as a case (82 cases / 42.1%); unknown (55 cases / 28.2%)



  • Number of PCR tests total (last 24 hours): 31,016
  • PCR tests rolling average (last 7 days): 28,849
  • PCR testing positivity (last 24 hours): 28.38%
  • Number of Rapid Antigen Tests stock available in New Zealand: 6.9 million (Please note that this number is not updated over the weekend and reflects the number of tests as of Friday.)
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