Wellington [New Zealand], January 28 (ANI/Xinhua): New Zealand reported 105 new COVID-19 cases in the community on Friday, including 15 infections with the Omicron variant of the virus, bringing the total tally in the country’s current community outbreak to 11,713.
The newly reported community cases of COVID-19 included confirmed infections with the Omicron variant and those linked to a previously reported Omicron case, according to the Ministry of Health.
“The number of cases and contacts are expected to grow given the highly transmissible nature of Omicron and as we learn more from case interviews,” the ministry said in a statement.
The 105 new COVID-19 infections reported on Friday included 76 recorded in the largest city Auckland, five in nearby Waikato, nine in Bay of Plenty, and seven in the Lakes region, according to the ministry.
Four COVID-19 patients are being treated in New Zealand hospitals, including one case in intensive care unit. The country has recorded 15,615 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic.
To date, about 94 per cent of the eligible people in New Zealand are fully vaccinated with at least two doses, the ministry said. More than 1.21 million boosters, or the third doses, have been administered, it said. Over 137,000, or 29 percent of 5-to-11-year-olds, have received their first dose.
The New Zealand government on Wednesday announced a three-phase plan that aims to curb the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in the country.
According to the plan, the Phase One response to Omicron involves taking a Stamp It Out approach. Cases will need to isolate for 14 days and contacts for 10 days. The Phase Two response is to slow the spread and protect the vulnerable communities, and the isolation period for cases is reduced to 10 days and contacts to seven days.
At Phase Three, when cases are in the thousands, contact tracing will be made further changes to include household and household-like contacts only. This will mean the highest risk contacts will need to isolate. (ANI/Xinhua)