Omicron update — 29 January 2022

Read the latest Omicron update from the Ministry of Health.

To date, 116 community cases of COVID-19 have either been confirmed by Whole Genome Sequencing as the Omicron variant or have been linked to a previously reported Omicron case.

Some of these additional cases have previously been reported as COVID-19 cases and linked retrospectively either through whole genome sequencing or epidemiologically.  

As of 9am this morning, there has been 39 cases connected to the Soundsplash music festival in Hamilton last weekend. However, this number will grow as further test results are received.

Given the increase in cases associated with Soundsplash, the Ministry of Health advises all attendees to get a test, if they have not already done so. If you attended the festival, please let the testing centre know that you were at the festival.

Two of the four community cases in Canterbury reported earlier in the week have now been determined to be Omicron.

There are active cases being treated as Omicron in Auckland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Taranaki, MidCentral, Canterbury, Tairāwhiti and Nelson-Tasman.  

The number of cases and contacts are expected to grow given the highly transmissible nature of Omicron and as we learn more from case interviews. 

We’re asking everyone in New Zealand to act like Omicron is circulating in their community.  

That means wearing a mask in indoor settings with people you don’t know, physical distancing, washing hands regularly and scanning in using the COVID-19 Tracer app, when you’re out and about.  

Anyone with any cold or flu symptoms that could be COVID-19 is asked to get a test and isolate at home until a negative result is returned.  

The most common early symptoms of the Omicron variant are a sore or scratchy throat, and a runny nose. So if you have these symptoms, please get a test.  

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