A Rotorua daycare hopes to reopen next week after a Covid-19 scare.
BestStart Deputy Chief Executive Fiona Hughes confirmed a child who attended the Pukuatua St daycare had tested positive for Covid and the centre had been closed since Monday."The child was infectious from the 17th to the 19th and there are 90 children there and 20 staff," Hughes said.
She said no one else had tested positive for the virus.
"All contacts had their day-five tests, and were having their day-eight tests today."We've been told we can reopen on Tuesday, unless we hear anything to the contrary about any test results."
The Lakes District Health Board referred the Rotorua Daily Post to Toi Te Ora, which is responsible for contact tracing positive cases and exposure and interest locations.
The confirmation comes after Wednesday's suspected Omicron case at BestStart Pyes Pa in Tauranga.
The case was at the childcare centre on January 19 and was likely infectious at the time, the Ministry of Health reported in a statement yesterday.
"All people present at the childhood centre at the time are being treated as close contacts, being asked to isolate, and get tested immediately," the statement said.
The Ministry said today there were three new cases linked to the daycare.
Children and Covid - a paediatrician's advice
Dr. Jin Russell, an Auckland paediatrician, said the majority of children experience Covid-19 similarly to a cold and many would have no symptoms at all.
"Covid-19 is a much less severe illness in children," she said.
"For the most part, the illness can be managed at home."
She said the Omicron variant manifested in children similarly to "other common respiratory viruses in childhood."
"It looks as though Omicron is less severe for children in general than RSV [respiratory syncytial virus], which went around our daycares last year.
"This is not to minimise the impact of any of these illnesses, but just to give parents a sense of what to expect."
She said daycares were places with lots of physical contact, so it was important for adults to be fully vaccinated and boosted, for spaces to have good ventilation, and for parents to keep sick children home.
"Sometimes children are sent to daycare and they've got a little bit of a runny nose – we really can't do that anymore [with Omicron]."
She is said children with the virus who have trouble breathing, unable to keep their fluids down, or going to the bathroom abnormally, should be taken to a GP to be checked.
Dr. Russell said children under 5 are capable of understanding the importance of Covid-19 prevention, including wearing masks.
"I think children are really resilient when you give them good reasons. They're also often very motivated to help other people."
She said parents should give simple, common sense directions.
Location of interest decision-making
Not all places that have a Covid-19 case are reported as locations of interest.
Toi Te Ora Public Health's medical officer of health Dr Jim Miller said there were "a number of criteria" to determine whether an exposure event required a location of interest label.
These included the amount of time the infected person spent there, any mask wearing or personal protective equipment in place, the nature of the location, and whether social distancing was observed.
These factors "determine whether there has been exposure risk and what sort of exposure people will have had at the location", he said.
He said there were two key reasons for naming an event as a location of interest - "if we cannot identify all people exposed at the location or if there are a large number of casual contacts.
"If we can identify all people at risk at a place, then it does not become a listed location of interest.
"For example, a daycare may be able to identify and contact all attenders."
Meanwhile the Te Purū Cafe & Bar at the Jet Park Hotel in Rotorua was visited by an infected person on January 19 between 7.45pm and 8.15pm.
People at the location during this time must also self-isolate and get tested.