NZ and Victoria virus outbreaks linked



The New Zealand and Victorian governments have been in talks over a possible link between the new outbreak in the country.

New Zealand has seen a surge of new cases of coronavirus after more than 100 days of no community transmission. The country now has 49 cases of community transmission, with 13 new cases of coronavirus reported today.

New Zealand's health authorities are still working to isolate where the outbreak originated, and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews have discussed possible links between the regions.

"I've had a couple of conversations with Prime Minister Ardern and the New Zealand High Commissioner," Mr Andrews said, according to a report from The Australian.

"We're remaining any and all support around some of that data."

But Victoria's Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said there's no evidence that links the outbreak in New Zealand to Victoria.

"I've heard the operator of Americold has said definitely that no freight has gone to New Zealand."

Health authorities in New Zealand have been conducting environmental testing at an Americold freight facility in Auckland linked to the outbreak.

Dr Ashley Bloomfield, the country's Director General of Health said they were testing the freight facility as a possible outbreak source, because a case with ""earliest onset date symptoms" was an employee there.

"We're doing the environmental testing," Dr Bloomfield said. "It may be a long shot but we're working with our Victorian counterparts ... there may well be no link but its one to exclude."

Victoria recorded 279 new coronavirus cases and 16 deaths on Sunday, but the Premier cautioned that "none of us can in any way become complacent or think that OK, now it will all just automatically kick in".

"You've got structures, you've got rules that kind of work at a macro level," he said. "But ultimately those rules are only as good as the many millions of individual choices and decisions that individuals and families make every single day."


Originally published as NZ and Victoria virus outbreaks linked

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