New Zealand confirms 5th COVID-19 death

World Monday 13/April/2020 16:21 PM
By: Times News Service
New Zealand confirms 5th COVID-19 death

WELLINGTON: A fifth person has died of COVID-19 in New Zealand, the Ministry of Health said on Monday.

New Zealand reported 15 new confirmed and four new probable cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the total number of confirmed and probable infections to 1,349 in the country.

Five people have died from COVID-19 so far, most of whom were elderly, and 546 people had recovered, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said at a press conference.

Bloomfield said the fifth death was a man is his 80s at Christchurch's Burwood Hospital after being transferred from the city's Rosewood Resthome, one of a key cluster of the country's 15 clusters.

"We know that because of the underlying vulnerabilities of this group we need to be prepared for further illness and possible death," he said, adding 33 COVID-19 cases have been involved with the Rosewood cluster, with 13 of whom were the resthome's elderly residents and 18 were staff.

Currently, 15 people are in hospital, with four in ICU, including one in a critical condition, he said.

More than 62,000 tests have been carried out to date, Bloomfield said.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told the press conference that the fifth death was a "timely reminder that our battle with this virus is far from over."

The government will release further details of the impact on the economy, including the impact on business and the budget, Ardern said.

"I understand the importance of this information for businesses and industry to plan," she said.

"Please stay home, please stay in your bubble, please break the chain of transmission to save lives," she added.

New Zealand entered a four-week lockdown, or epidemic response Alert Level 4, from midnight March 25.