No community cases; 3 new cases of COVID-19 in managed isolation

Media release

19 July 2021

There are no cases of COVID-19 to report in the community in New Zealand today.

There are three positive cases of COVID-19 to report today in recent returnees in managed isolation facilities.

One previously reported case has now recovered. The number of active cases in New Zealand is 47.

Since 1 January 2021, there have been 99 historical cases, out of a total of 644 cases.

The seven-day rolling average of new cases detected at the border is seven.    

Our total number of confirmed cases is 2,461.

Playa Zahara Update

The fishing ship Playa Zahara is now secured at a quarantine berth at Lyttelton Port within an exclusion zone not accessible by the public.

Thirteen of the crew of 18 were yesterday safely transferred to a managed isolation and quarantine facility in Christchurch, using standard Infection Prevention and Control measures including the use of appropriate PPE.

Welfare and health checks will be conducted daily on the five crew members remaining aboard the ship and plans are in place should any of them become unwell. Customs will maintain a presence at the port while the Playa Zahara is berthed there.

Whole genome sequencing has now been completed on samples from three further COVID-19 positive crew members. Along with the three reported on Friday, they have the Delta variant with no links to previously confirmed cases in New Zealand or to the Viking Bay. The remaining whole genome sequencing results are expected over the next few days.

The two crew members who previously tested negative, tested negative again on arrival in Christchurch.

Travellers from Australia

New Zealand public health officials continue to closely monitor the situation in Australia, particularly in NSW, Queensland and Victoria, where there has been a growing number of COVID-19 cases. Travel with NSW was paused on 22 June and with Victoria on 16 July.

Anyone who was in Victoria since 8 July is encouraged to keep checking the Victoria Health website for locations of interest which continue to be announced.

Anyone who was in Queensland since 28 June is encouraged to check the Queensland Health website for locations on interest.

People who have been at these locations at the relevant time should immediately isolate at their home or appropriate accommodation and call Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for advice on testing.

So far, contact tracing has identified 21 people in New Zealand who have been in locations of interest in the two states at the relevant time; 13 in Brisbane, two in wider Queensland and six in Melbourne.

Of those, 17 have had initial tests and returned negative results and the remaining four contacts are awaiting test results. Of the 21 contacts, three are isolating for 14 days and the remainder are isolating until they return a negative day five test.

New border cases in New Zealand

Arrival date



Positive test day/reason  

Managed isolation/quarantine location

14 July

Serbia and Montenegro

United Arab Emirates

Day 3/routine testing


16 July



Day 1/routine testing


17 July



Day 0/routine testing


The full travel histories of the two cases who arrived on 13 July and reported yesterday have now been obtained. One was from the United States and travelled via Qatar and Australia. The other case was from South Africa and travelled via Qatar and Australia.


The total number of COVID-19 tests processed by laboratories to date is 2,401,725.

On Sunday, 3,876 tests were processed across New Zealand.

The seven-day rolling average is 6,823.

For all testing locations nationwide visit the Healthpoint website.


NZ COVID Tracer now has 2,900,600 registered users.

Poster scans have reached 308,040,089 and users have created 12,021,109 manual diary entries.

There have been 496,933 scans in the last 24 hours to midday yesterday.

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