As Cases Rise in New Zealand, the Delta Strain is Being Referred to as a “Whole new Virus”

The majority of the outbreak’s 41 new confirmed patients are of Samoan ethnicity and are tied to the Samoan Assembly Of God Church.

New Zealand has registered 41 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 148, according to Ashley Bloomfield, Director-General of Health, who also warned that limiting the Delta variant’s spread is “like dealing with a completely new virus.”

Bloomfield said at a news conference on Tuesday that 38 of the new cases are in Auckland and three in Wellington, the capital. According to reports, the youngest victim is a baby.

Image Source: AL JAZEERA

The bulk of the outbreak’s confirmed cases are of Samoan ethnicity and are tied to the Samoan Assembly Of God Church.

According to sources, the church has been linked to 58 confirmed cases. This includes both those who were present at the service and those who were close to the family.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Bloomfield had discussed the characteristics of the Delta variation with Australia’s Department of Health Secretary, Professor Dr Brendan Murphy, on Monday.

He agreed with Murphy that “combating Delta in the community is like dealing with a whole new virus”.

“That is our experience in New Zealand, too. Delta is unlike our previous experience, it is, as we know, highly infectious and transmissible, and as we have seen, spreads rapidly.”

Genome sequencing on the first case identified in Auckland was connected to a visitor who had returned from Sydney, Australia, according to reports.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Monday that the country’s lockdown would be extended until Friday, when it would be reviewed based on the development of new cases.

Ardern, on the other hand, stated that the stay-at-home orders in Auckland will be in effect until at least August 31.

Image Source: The New York Times

“We are still very much in the thick of this outbreak,” said Ardern on Monday.

“We don’t yet believe we’ve reached the peak of this outbreak or necessarily the edges of it,” she said in a news conference.

New Zealand’s vaccination programme has been slower than many other developed nations despite a recent acceleration. About 32 percent of people have had at least one dose of the vaccine while 18 percent are fully vaccinated.

Source: AL JAZEERA

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