Covid 19 coronavirus: Locations of interest list grows after second visit to dairy emerges

A second visit to a Papatoetoe dairy has emerged with a new date and time added to the list, highlighting possible exposure to a South Auckland family infected with Covid-19.

Customers who visited the Ranfurly Skinny Superette last Friday at dinner time are being asked to self-isolate and get tested.

The Ministry of Health has added this new visit to its locations of interest after earlier listing the store as a possible place of exposure following a visit on Saturday evening by one of the three at the centre of this week’s community Covid-19 outbreak.

The second and earlier visit to the Ranfurly Skinny Superette took place on February 12 between 5.30pm – 6.35pm.

Those who were at the dairy on Friday at the same time as the infected customer are being considered casual plus contacts. They are being asked to stay home, contact Healthline and get a test tomorrow.

They are then advised to stay home until they receive a negative result.

It comes as the experts try to work out the source of the outbreak which has sparked a snap regional lockdown after three members of a Papatoetoe family tested positive for Covid at the weekend.

Widespread testing is taking place across South Auckland and Taranaki after a girl, who is a year 9 high school student at Papatoetoe High School, and mother, an employee at LSG Sky Chefs in Māngere, travelled south for a break over Waitangi Weekend when they were infectious.

The father, who is a self-employed tradesman, has also tested positive despite being asymptomatic.

All have tested positive for the highly contagious UK variant and are at Auckland’s Jet Park quarantine facility.

Another member of the household has tested negative and is currently isolating at home.

There are 42 close contacts of the family, the majority connected to Papatoetoe High School.Only nine are not associated with the college.

Results are expected back today from the hundreds of pupils who flocked to a dedicated testing station at the school yesterday after they were asked to get swabbed to determine if the virus was spreading among them.

So far 12 close contacts have returned negative tests, director general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield revealed this morning.

Bloomfield told Newstalk ZB’s Mike Hosking that if all of the close contacts came back negative “that would reduce the likelihood” Covid-19 was widespread in the community.

But he wouldn’t go so far as to say New Zealand would be in the clear.

“We’re not done, what we are is reassured that there hasn’t been any onward transmission from our current cases. The other thing we’re really looking for – because we’re not sure exactly where this infection has come from – is are there any parallel sort of chains of infection or chains of transmission out there in the community.

“So the wider testing in the school, and in the workplace and the community, and in particular those places of interest is what we’re really looking at as well.”

Bloomfield said officials were keeping an open mind about the source of the infection because the daughter developed symptoms before the mother.

“One of the interesting things here is that the daughter reported onset of symptoms before the mother. So we have to be open-minded that she could be the first case, and could have got it somewhere else. And that’s what we’re trying to track down.”

Health authorities have increased testing facilities in South Auckland to cater to demand with a new pop-up station at Kohuora Park in Papatoetoe.

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