A retirement business with 5500 residents and 1300 staff says some people are self-isolating after being classified as close contacts or visiting places of interest.
Earl Gasparich, chief executive of the $4 billion national Metlifecare, said many staff and residents had been vaccinated and were isolating.
"There's a few staff we have, due to household contacts. They're taking the normal precautions. There's a lot more risk of the pandemic this time due to it being the Delta variant and so widespread," he said of the Auckland areas classified places of interest.
"We have had residents that have visited some of those locations of interest but they're largely vaccinated so they have protected themselves."
Metlifecare's Auckland villages include The Poynton at Takapuna, Beachland's Pohutakawa Landing, Waitakere Gardens, The Orchards at Glenfield, Pinesong in Titirangi, Longford Park at Takanini, Highlands at Highland Park, Hibiscus Coast Village at Redbeach, Greenwich Gardens in Unsworth Heights, Dannemora Gardens in Botany Downs, Crestwood at New Lynn, Hillsborough Heights at Mt Roskill and 7 Saint Vincent in Remuera.
Close contacts should isolate for at least 14 days since their last contact or exposure to the confirmed case and until they are told they no longer need to do so by a public health official.
More than 47,000 older New Zealanders live in retirement villages owned and operated by Ryman Healthcare, Summerset Group, Oceania Healthcare, Bupa, Arvida Group and Metlifecare.
Pandemic measures at those villages now include banning visitors except to palliative care, restricting movements within villages and wearing PPE gear.
Asked exactly how many Metlifecare staff and residents were isolating, Gasparich said: "A handful."
He would not say if that was only in Auckland nor say which villages were affected. The company was spending more than $5m on pandemic control measures and last year received the wage subsidy but then repaid it, he said.
The Australian Department of Health said by August 6, 2088 residents cases of Covid-19 outbreaks were recorded in residential aged care facilities. In New South Wales, all residential age care facilities are being monitored through the NSW Aged Care State Health Emergency Operations Centre.
Last March, financial analysts warned New Zealand's proliferating retirement villages were at high risk of coronavirus infection.
In an analysis headed "Covid-19 risk hangs over sector", Stephen Ridgewell, Adam Lilley and Sam White of Craigs Investment Partners released a detailed review of five listed retirement companies.
Ridgewell said today: "I think it would be fair to say there is still a risk from the pandemic to residents, but also a lot has changed in the last 17 months. Most notably, vaccinated people have a much lower risk of getting very sick and hospitalised than in the early parts of the pandemic. This reflects not only the benefit of the vaccines, but also the way clinicians treat Covid patients has vastly improved since those early days."
Last week, the Herald reported on how measures to control the Delta variant's potential threat to some of the 47,000-plus most vulnerable New Zealanders in retirement villages was prompting bosses in the sector to meet last Friday.
John Collyns, executive director of the Retirement Villages Association, said that in a similar move during the last alert level 4, around 14 industry representatives met virtually. Pandemic control measures during this alert level 4 were at the top of the agenda for discussion.
Those who met were Retirement Villages Association president and Generus Group director Graham Wilkinson, vice-president Michelle Burke who is a partner at Anthony Harper Lawyers, Metlifecare's Maggie Owens who is a non-executive director, Summerset Group chief executive Scott Scoullar, Arvida Group chief executive Jeremy Nicoll, Metlifecare chief executive Earl Gasparich, Oceania Group chief executive Brent Pattison, Bupa Healthcare chief executive Carolyn Cooper, Acacia Cove manager Bruce Cullington, Selwyn Foundation chief executive Jason More, Qestral Corporation director Simon O'Dowd, Ryman Healthcare chief financial officer David Bennett, independent member Tracy Martin and Collyns.
The Ministry of Health data shows 1 million New Zealanders are vaccinated.
Last month, the JLL NZ retirement villages and aged-care whitepaper written by a team including senior research analyst Lisa Chen found the sector expanding fast. New Zealand's rapidly "greying" population has resulted in 47,249 people living in retirement villages, up on 45,000 people a year ago.
Ryman said all its villages were closed to visitors except for in palliative or end-of-life care.
"There are full infection control procedures in place, staff are wearing PPE and caring for residents in bubbles. Zoom calls and activities programmes continue within the bubbles to keep everyone entertained. All our staff are using PPE, including wearing face shields and N95 face masks as a precaution, and we have increased pay rates by $2 an hour to help them and their families through the lockdown period," Ryman said last week.
Staff also get free meals at work and are changing into their uniforms on site as an extra safeguard. Ryman has been running a large vaccination programme since April and more than 28,000 vaccines had been delivered.
More than 80 per cent of staff and care residents have had vaccines and Ryman was running additional clinics where it could to vaccinate the remaining people.