Dr Ashley Bloomfield has revealed the process for checking in with Covid-19 cases self-isolating at home, in most circumstances, is carried out through a “daily email”.
Bloomfield spoke to Breakfast Thursday morning following the news a Covid-19 case isolating at home was found dead in their Manukau home by a visiting family member.
“It’s tragic news and you really feel for this family and my condolences to them,” Bloomfield said.
“We were notified late yesterday afternoon by police who had been called by [the relative that found the deceased] that this person had been found.
“We don’t have any further information, but it was someone who was isolating because they were a positive Covid case.
"We don’t have any further information than that but obviously we’ll be working closely with police just to look at the circumstances and because it’s an unexplained death, it’ll be referred to the coroner to determine the cause of death.”
Bloomfield said the Ministry of Health would be taking a “very close look” at what support services were available to the deceased before their death.
The Director-General of Health said cases self-isolating at home like the deceased receive “daily check-ins” from health officials which is often done via email.
“There’s a process in place and they’ll quite happily send a daily email to describe their symptoms but that’s only after an initial, quite thorough assessment,” Bloomfield said.
“[That includes] what health needs and what support needs, what the needs might be of other household members, and in fact even whether someone needs to isolate to be safe in a managed isolation quarantine facility.”
Bloomfield added there is also the potential for “face-to-face to contact” with self-isolating cases when they need additional support such as food.
The Ministry of Health said prior to the death announcement 692 cases in Auckland were being supported by health officials to safely isolate at home as a further 100 community cases were announced in the outbreak.
The deceased tested positive for the virus on October 24.