A person who died after testing positive for Covid-19 in a managed isolation facility a month ago has been included in New Zealand’s official outbreak death toll.
The Ministry of Health has confirmed the person who died at Auckland’s Crowne Plaza Hotel within days of arriving in New Zealand on November 3 has now had their death added to the grim tally this week.
There have now been 48 people who have died since Covid-19 arrived on our shores in 2020.
The ministry said the delayed announcement was due to an investigation that involved international jurisdictions.
“It’s not uncommon for a border case to be reported and then placed under investigation and then classified as either a case or not a case after communication with other jurisdictions,” said a health ministry spokesperson.
At the time health officials said the Covid-infected guest arrived on November 3 and tested positive for the infection during their day-three routine test at the Crowne Plaza facility.
The returnee died at the managed isolation hotel five days later.
The ministry acknowledged the efforts of the managed isolation facility’s staff and paramedics in efforts to save the person’s life.
A police media spokesperson said police attended the Crowne Plaza in relation to a sudden death that appeared to be a medical event.
A ministry spokesperson said the cause of the person’s death would be determined by the Coroner, including whether it may have been Covid-19 related.
The inclusion of the death a month later has proved perplexing with just three publicised deaths at hospitals in recent days but the official tally showing four people losing their lives.
Two had died in two Auckland hospitals, including the country’s youngest victim aged in his 30s, and one in Tauranga Hospital.
The confusion was amplified when the Tauranga patient’s death saw the toll rise to 48 despite the tally standing at 46 just days earlier after the death of two Aucklanders.
The 47th case first appeared on the Ministry of Health’s website as part of the 1pm update on Monday, December 13 but news of the death was not publicised.
The returnee was the second person to die from Covid-19 in a managed isolation and quarantine facility since the outbreak started in 2020.
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