As of Monday, there were four further coronavirus cases in the Southern District Health Board (SDHB) district, including one in Wānaka. The Wānaka teenager had returned to New Zealand after travelling in Europe. They are recovering in isolation at home with mild symptoms.
A West Otago woman in her 50s, a Dunedin woman in her 30s, and a Dunedin woman in her 20s were also announced as having been diagnosed with coronavirus.
“This brings the total cases in the Southern district to 13; 12 confirmed and one probable,” said Nicola Mutch, communications advisor for SDHB.
The West Otago woman and Dunedin woman in her 30s both attended the World Hereford Conference in Queenstown from March 9-13.
The Dunedin woman in her 20s had recently returned from travel in the US. All have been in self-isolation since their return to New Zealand.
All four individuals are mildly unwell and are at home.
About 100 close contacts are being identified and tracked by public health staff.
There is an increasing risk of community transmission because cases are infectious for 48 hours before symptoms arise; many cases have very mild symptoms and may delay contacting their health provider. Some confirmed cases have been very social and active before their diagnosis and while infectious.
Mutch said: “Again, we call upon the community to provide support to and respect the privacy of the affected people, and we thank everyone who for cooperating with requests to self-isolate.
“If everyone follows alert level 3 and 4 actions, then we can significantly reduce the risk of widespread illness in the coming weeks. If we all do the right thing now, this will help protect us all.”