NZ has prepared for new Covid waves - PM

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says officials have advised her that "the most meaningful thing we can do" as cases surge is ensure people have received their boosters, vaccinations and to use masks.

Ardern's comments come as daily cases surpassed 10,000, with Wednesday's 10,290 new cases the highest tally in 76 days.

More than 500 are also hospitalised with the virus.

"Any increase in settings, such as a move to Red, what that does is impose gathering limits," she said. The country is currently in Orange.

"Where we're seeing increases at the moment, the view seems to be that actually those restrictions would not necessarily reduce the cases we have. Masks do. Vaccines do."

Ardern mentioned that Covid cases within the North Shore were responsible for "a reasonable part of that lift", due to Covid cases and transmission within the hospital.

On Monday, Waitematā DHB reported evidence of five visitors to the hospital passing Covid-19 on to patients.

A spokesperson for Waitematā DHB said at least 100 people in the North Shore Hospital had Covid. Wednesday's reported Covid numbers had 522 overall hospitalised across the country.

"Internationally you can see the impact B4 and B5 is having," Ardern said of the new variants. "A 30% increase being reported in Europe and the UK, quite dramatically."

"New waves are not unexpected, New Zealand has prepared for this. It is taking its toll because of the impact it's also having on our workforce," she said.

"In particular our health workforce, they're not only dealing with increased admissions into hospital, they themselves are experiencing illness and that means we have absences and others are having to pick up extra work and extra shifts.

"Thank you for the work you are doing. Now the rest of us need to show our solidarity with our health workforce to make sure we're doing our bit. Please get vaccinated with your most up-to-date booster and please use your mask."