News Coronavirus New Zealand has 55 more COVID cases, as vax rates jump

New Zealand has 55 more COVID cases, as vax rates jump

nz coronavirus lockdown end
Most of NZ's COVID cases are still in Auckland, although two other regions are also in lockdown. Photo: Getty
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New Zealand has reported 55 community cases of COVID-19, its second-highest daily count in six weeks.

Auckland remains the hardest hit region in New Zealand’s Delta outbreak, with 53 cases on Wednesday.

The other two were in the neighbouring Waikato region.

The government also reviewed lockdown settings in the Waikato and Northland on Wednesday, and both will remain in level-three lockdown.

“We have two cases in the Waikato that we don’t have any links for,” COVID-19 Minister Chris Hipkins said.

“We weren’t willing to step down … we don’t know how they were infected and we don’t have a full understanding of who else might be involved in the chain of transmission.”

Northland also remains in lockdown after two women crossed the Auckland border illegally, touring the region before testing positive for the virus.

The lockdown in Auckland, Northland and much of the Waikato – involving more than half of New Zealand’s population – will next be assessed on Monday.

More than 73,000 Kiwis – about 1.5 per cent of the population – were vaccinated on Tuesday as health workers administered their six millionth dose of the Pfizer shot.

About 80 per cent of eligible New Zealanders have had at least one dose of vaccine, with 57 per cent fully vaccinated.