39 cases linked to Soundsplash, attendees asked to get tested

Source: 1News

All attendees of the Soundsplash festival in Hamilton have been asked to immediately get tested for Covid-19.

Several people have tested positive for Covid-19 after attending Soundsplash.

In its daily statement, the Ministry of Health advised all attendees of the Soundsplash festival to get a test. Health officials had previously only asked attendees to get tested if they had symptoms.

The new testing advice was prompted after 39 positive cases were linked to the festival by Saturday morning, according to the ministry. It said it expected the “number will grow as further test results are received".

READ MORE: 11 new Omicron infections to report on Saturday; 97 Covid cases

“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,” the ministry said.

Health officials discovered cases linked to the festival in Auckland, Northland, Tairāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay, with several being treated as potential Omicron cases, according to the ministry. Genome sequencing is also underway on multiple cases.

On Friday, the ministry said one case who had attended the festival was confirmed to have had the Omicron variant.

Multiple attendees from Auckland told 1News on Friday they had tested positive for the virus. A festival-goer said she had a slight cough but didn’t think anything of it until her test came back positive on Thursday.

“I had the phone call come through and my heart just stopped.”

She told 1News that 11 of her friends have tested positive, two of which are the Omicron variant.

"One of the two [cases] include the one who initially got told she had Delta."

Earlier on Wednesday, University of Auckland microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles said on Twitter that she was concerned about the event becoming a “superspreader” for Covid.

The event had capacity for up to 8000 attendees and ran from Friday 21 January to Sunday 23 January at Hamilton's Mystery Creek.