There are 8 new cases of covid-19 in New Zealand, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield says.

The total number of cases is now 28. The new cases today all relate to overseas travel.

There is still no evidence of community transmission in NZ, Bloomfield says.

The Ministry of Health is working to identify any close contacts.

Two of the cases are in Southland, two in Taranaki, one in Rotorua, one in Northland and two in Auckland.

“We are obviously alert to all the new cases and identifying any close contacts,” Bloomfield says.

Healthline will be provided with the details for the people considered close contacts from being on the flights with the new eight cases.

Bloomfield is giving an update on the coronavirus outbreak in New Zealand.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is continuing to urge concerned Kiwis not to panic, saying they should instead prepare for what lies ahead.

“This is not a time for panic,” Ardern said yesterday. “It is a time for preparation.”

Ardern urged anyone who had arrived back in the country in the past fortnight to go into self-isolation, even if they arrived before the requirement for self-isolation.

Bloomfield, told Newstalk ZB that there’s been a big increase in testing over the past two to three days.

Bloomfield said 500 or 600 tests are now being done each day.

He said the positive tests have only been from those who’ve returned from overseas.

The increase in cases parallels a ramping up of testing from about 600 in the past six weeks.

And testing of seemingly well people who have had close contact with confirmed Covid-19 patients has begun for the first time.

NZ Herald

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