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2365 new Covid cases, two deaths, 86 in south

Feb 21, 2022

The Ministry of Health is reporting 2365 new community cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand today.

In a statement, the ministry said there has also been two Covid-19 related deaths.

"Sadly, we are today reporting the death of a patient at Middlemore Hospital."

A patient in their 70s at Auckland City Hospital also died following a diagnosis of Covid-19, the ministry said.

"Our thoughts and condolences are with both patients' family and friends."

There are 116 people in hospital today - one in Northland, 20 in North Shore, 34 in Middlemore, 47 in Auckland, one in Tauranga, 12 in Waikato and one in Tairāwhiti.

There is one case in ICU or HDU.

The average age of the current hospitalisations is 58.

Of the 2365 new community cases today, 50 are in Northland, 1692 in Auckland, 136 in Waikato, 42 in Bay of Plenty, 24 in Lakes, 23 in Hawke's Bay, 14 in MidCentral, five in Whanganui , four in Taranaki, nine in Tairāwhiti, eight in Wairarapa, 89 in Capital and Coast, 19 in Hutt Valley, 58 in Nelson Marlborough, 105 in Canterbury, one in South Canterbury and 86 in Southern.

There are 12 new cases at the border.

In the last 24 hours, 27,109 tests were processed.

"As this demand has grown, some Covid-19 test results for Auckland and Waikato are currently taking longer to process at laboratories. The use of rapid antigen testing, alongside PCR testing, will improve this process at a time of exceptional demand in phase 2, provided the Community Testing Centre queues are freely available for those who really need a test," the ministry said.

It reminded people to be patient: "Our frontline staff across the health sector are doing the best they can to help in a timely way."

On vaccinations, 1338 first doses were administered yesterday, 649 second doses, 1122 paediatric doses and 15,441 booster doses.

The ministry says 90 percent of Māori in Counties Manukau DHB have now received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

It's the last of the region's DHBs to reach the first dose milestone.

The ministry said from this morning, rapid antigen tests were now available at Auckland community testing centres.

"Access to rapid antigen tests will be expanded further during the coming week. At this time, please do not visit your GP for a RAT test or call them for guidance on RAT eligibility at community testing centres. We will be providing further updates on the rollout throughout this week."

Yesterday New Zealand's daily Covid-19 numbers surpassed the 2000 mark for the first time, with 2522 new community cases reported.

Yesterday also saw a record number of people with Covid-19 in hospital with most of the 100 people in hospital in Auckland and none in intensive care.

Wellington Hospital's chief medical officer Dr John Tait today said that anyone who was at the protest outside Parliament who had Covid-19 symptoms should go home or contact their GP or community health service, rather than heading to hospital.

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