New Zealand has another 85 new coronavirus cases today and one patient is now being treated in a hospital intensive care unit.

There are 76 new confirmed and nine probable cases.

Thirty-seven people have now recovered. There are eight people in hospital – one of these patients is in intensive care, Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield told reporters.

The total of confirmed and probable cases is now 368 in this country.

Bloomfield again called on anyone who was waiting to hear back about a test to stay in self-isolation.

A strong link to overseas travel was still being seen in New Zealand cases, he said.

The Government is circulating appropriate advice on personal protection equipment (PPE) and this will be on the Ministry of Health’s website later today.

The Government’s national pandemic supply of PPE consists of:
• 1.9 million aprons and gowns
• 2.7 million gloves
• 670,000 eye protection equipment

“All stones are being turned over” to make sure there is enough PPEs for all healthcare works in New Zealand,” Bloomfield said.

More special powers for the Government may be used as the lockdown continues.

Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield.
Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield.

A total of 2500 retired health professionals had returned to the workforce to help with the Covid-19 outbreak response, Bloomfield said.

It would take a week to 10 days for the number of Covid-19 cases to come down.

“These are unprecedented times for New Zealand, and internationally,” Bloomfield said.

Isolated reports of lockdown breaches

Director of Civil Defence Emergency Management Sarah Stuart-Black thanked people for staying home.

Information from the police suggested that generally, people were doing the right thing.

However, there were isolated reports of some people congregating.

Stuart-Black said those people were reminded about their obligations at level four.

Over the coming days, the number of Covid-19 cases will continue to rise – “hang in there”, was her advice.

Work and Income payments, such as the benefit, would continue while New Zealand was in lockdown.

Stuart-Black said if someone is a visitor to New Zealand and needed financial support, they should contact their embassy.

Yesterday, Bloomfield revealed there were 78 new and probable cases in the country bringing the total number up to 283.

He also confirmed that 27 people have recovered from Covid-19 and, so far, 12,683 tests have been carried out.

There a now more than half a million cases of Covid-19 worldwide and 24,000 confirmed deaths.

This morning, the nation entered its second day of lockdown.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told media yesterday that the first day of the lockdown had gone well.

“So far, so good,” she said.

But an Auckland man is facing charges after being pulled over twice yesterday – he was not an essential worker and was not undertaking essential travel.

“The person was stopped last night and he was stopped the night before,” Police Commissioner Mike Bush told Newstalk ZB’s Mike Hosking.

“He had no reason to be out there. That does show our people [are on to it].

“Unfortunately for him, he wasn’t complying with a number of driving matters… he wasn’t entitled to have that car or to be out there.”

A police spokeswoman said the driver was stopped by the Auckland Motorways police team. The Government’s official Covid-19 advisory website

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