Palmerston North Covid-19 case has Omicron - Ministry of Health

Source: 1News

A person with Covid-19 in Palmerston North is confirmed as having the Omicron variant.

Covid-19 test (file photo).

The person was being treated as a possible Omicron case as they were a recent returnee from managed isolation, the Ministry of Health said previously.

The case had returned five negative tests while in a Christchurch managed isolation facility.

They were released from MIQ on January 16 and travelled on flight NZ550 from Christchurch to Auckland departing at 2pm, arriving into Auckland 3.20pm.

The person then travelled on NZ5121 from Auckland to Palmerston North at 4.55pm.

The case is only considered to be infectious from Monday 17 January, but those who travelled on either of these flights are asked to get tested as soon as possible as a precautionary measure.

Anyone with symptoms are asked to get a test and isolate immediately.

The ministry say whole genome sequencing identified similarities to border cases identified in Auckland, but no direct links.

"It has not identified any links to cases in the Christchurch MIQ facility, suggesting that the source of infection is offshore – either in the country they travelled from or during travel to New Zealand - rather than transmission in the Christchurch MIQ facility where they stayed," a statement from the ministry said.

Wednesday's case was the first Covid-19 case in the Manawatū region since November.

The person was fully vaccinated with two doses of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine and is now isolating at home.

Several locations of interest in Palmerston North linked to the Omicron case have been released and updated Friday afternoon, with the note "this exposure is linked to an Omicron case".

Postie Palmerston North and Bunnings Warehouse are among the locations.

The full list of times and locations can be found here.