Increased testing for COVID-19 underway in Hawke’s Bay

Hawke’s Bay hasn’t reported any new cases of COVID-19 since April 27. The total number of people swabbed in the bay is now at 6,678 with more intensive testing planned in the next two weeks. 

Medical Officer of Health Rachel Eyre said the most important thing anyone in Hawke’s Bay could do right now was to call their GP or Healthline so they could be tested if they had any symptoms of cold and flu, to help ensure there were no undetected cases of COVID lurking in Hawke’s Bay. 

Dr Eyre said the Occupational Health team at Hawke’s Bay DHB had also tested 263 frontline healthcare workers, who had volunteered to be tested as part of a nationwide screening programme for asymptomatic health care workers over the past week. This included St John’s ambulance drivers, cleaners and orderlies as well as the clinical front line teams in  Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s Emergency Department, Intensive Care Unit and the respiratory ward, who were all at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19. 

“These staff work in areas that managed COVID positive patients or were exposed to large numbers of possible COVID patients. All the results were negative. This is very reassuring and shows our processes and systems, especially around personal protective equipment (PPE), are working,” she said. 

Dr Eyre said over the weekend 129  Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) workers had also been tested and  74 results retuned, so far, had been negative. 

Health Hawke’s Bay (PHO) was working to get more people in outlying areas such as Porongahau, Waipawa, Otane and rural areas around Wairoa, tested and was coordinating an increased testing plan to enable this. 

“When we move to Alert Level 2 we want to be confident that there is little likelihood of the virus anywhere in Hawke’s Bay and to help us be confident about that we will continue our increased testing for at least the next two weeks.” 

Symptoms of COVID-19 include cold or flu-like illness with one or more of the following: a fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, a runny nose or loss of smell. 

Feeling unwell? Call your GP or Healthline for free on 0800 358 5453 to be assessed for referral to a Community-Based Assessment Centre (CBAC) for testing.  

Current Hawke’s Bay COVID-19 numbers: 11 May, 2020

These numbers are updated each afternoon following the Ministry of Health update

Confirmed & probable cases in Hawke’s Bay


Recovered cases in Hawke’s Bay

35 (80%)


Current cases

Recovered cases

Hastings district



Wairoa district



Central Hawke’s Bay






Number of cases in hospital in Hawke’s Bay


Total number of tests in Hawke’s Bay

6678 (10 May)


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