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Archive: 2020

COVID-19 testing

Updated 27 July 2021

The earlier we can spot a new COVID outbreak, the smaller we can keep it; every day counts.  So we encourage people to come and get tested if they have a respiratory illness like a cold or sore throat.  COVID specimen numbers in the Waikato are running at about 300 a day and we could comfortably test 1000 if needed.  Please refer to national guidance on who should be tested. Locations where people can get tested in the community are shown here.

Lab testing is done 7 days a week.  Expected turnaround time is  <48 hours and is usually <24 hr for specimens collected at Waikato Hospital.  Selected cases may be tested urgently between the hours 08:00 and 22:00 by phoned request, but our capacity is limited to 4 or 5 urgent cases each day.   It is best to walk the specimen to the lab for urgent testing like this.  Turnaround time for rapid testing is <2 hours.

ICU, HDU and Haem/Oncology:  please phone 98606 to request.  All other locations: please phone the Clinical Microbiologist on duty 027 2905255 to request



Dr Chris Mansell

Clinical Microbiologist



Latest laboratory specimen collection information can be found here

Waikato Respiratory Virus Report Week 51

22 December 2020

A variety of respiratory viruses are circulating in the Waikato but Influenza, RSV and SARS-CoV-2 remain absent.

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Gentamicin Monitoring

21 December 2020

Supply of gentamicin level monitoring test reagents has been interrupted and we may suddenly be unable to test it at all. A new supply is expected later in January.

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Waikato Respiratory Virus Report Week 47

25 November 2020

We’re seeing a wide diversity of respiratory viruses in the Waikato at present and anecdotally increased numbers of children presenting with more severe illness.

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Waikato Respiratory Virus 2020 Week 45

9 November 2020

Rhinoviruses, seasonal coronaviruses and adenoviruses are present but Influenza, RSV and SARS-CoV-2 are not circulating in the Waikato. Thank you for continuing to send in swabs for COVID-19 testing.

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Waikato Respiratory Virus 2020 Week 43

27 October 2020

It’s summer season for viruses already and we are seeing just a few rhinovirus and adenovirus.

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Latest News

Waikato Respiratory Virus Report 2021 Week 29

27 July 2021

RSV numbers have started to fall. Cases in 2021 have now reached twice the number in a typical winter, catching up after zero cases in 2020.

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Waikato Respiratory Virus Report 2021 Week 28

23 July 2021

This is the most cases we have seen in one season, so far.

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Waikato Respiratory Virus Report 2021 week 27

12 July 2021

RSV numbers are very high, probably due to the larger population of non immune children because it didn't circulate last year.

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