Covid-19 update: Nine new community cases were reported today.

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The Ministry of Health reports that the number of new Covid-19 community cases in New Zealand has dropped to single digits for the first time in weeks, with nine new cases.

All of today’s nine cases have been linked to earlier cases. Six are known contacts and three are household cases.

There are now a total of 1131 cases in the outbreak. Of those, 902 have recovered.

There were 15 new community cases reported yesterday, all in Auckland. Just one of those cases remains unlinked.

There are 13 people in hospital, with three people in ICU.

Speaking at today’s media briefing Director of Public Health Dr Caroline McElnay said the number of swabs taken across Auckland yesterday dropped to 6928. There were 297 swabs taken in the new area of interest Mt Wellington, while 1725 swabs have been taken in Clover Park since Tuesday.

Since the start of the month, 20.8 percent of Clover Park have been tested, but Dr McElnay said they still wanted people from the suburb to turn out for testing.

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Dr McElnay said there were two exemptions for the new testing requirement for people travelling across the boundary for personal reasons.

One is for one-way travel for people travelling from alert level 2 into level 3 and then remaining there; and people attending a healthcare appointment for people travelling from level 2 to 3 and then back to 2. They will need evidence of their appointment, including vaccination.

Dr McElnay said the testing requirements for essential workers was unchanged.

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