COVID-19 UPDATE FOR 27 February 2022 (CKT)

Health ministry Te Marae Ora (TMO) can now confirm that 15 more cases of Covid-19 have been identified since our last update, bringing the new total number of positive cases detected in the Cook Islands to 25 as of 2pm Sunday, February 27.

Of these 25 cases, 21 are currently in isolation while cases 1-4 have completed their isolation periods and been released, having also been symptom-free for the last 72 hours of their isolation.

All 25 cases are vaccinated, and while many have experienced mild Covid symptoms, none have required hospital treatment so far.

In connection with these 25 cases, there are 49 close contacts currently under 10-day quarantine, with another 57 close contacts having already completed their 10-day quarantine periods, remaining Covid-free throughout.

A further 18 close contacts have tested positive while under quarantine and been subsequently placed in isolation, and they make up a significant percentage of our 25 positive cases.

But due to the shorter incubation period of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 and to better align ourselves with current practice in New Zealand, a decision has been made to reduce the quarantine period for close contacts from tomorrow onwards.

While household contacts – those who live in the same household as a positive case – will still be required to quarantine for 10 days, with PCR tests on days one, five and nine, as of Monday February 28, other non-household close contacts will only be required to quarantine for seven days, with PCR tests on days one and five and a RAT test on day seven.

While our contact tracing investigations into the 15 new positive cases continue, only one new Location Of Interest has been identified as yet – the OTR nightclub and bar between the hours of 11pm and 2am on the night of Friday, February 25. Any further Locations Of Interest will be added to the official list (see below) as they come to light.

And though not yet official Locations Of Interest, with at least one new positive case identified at each of Te Uki Ou, Tereora College and Nikao Maori schools, the decision has now been made to close each of these schools for 24 hours on Monday, February 28, with each school reopening on Tuesday, March 1.

This temporary closure will allow for further contact tracing and testing of students, teachers and family members, and does not affect any of our other schools on Rarotonga, all of which will continue to operate tomorrow.

Testing continued at Constitution Park today, and for those who were unable to make it, we are especially asking that all Year 11 Tereora College students and all Apii Nikao Marae 5 students and their families present themselves for PCR testing as soon as possible.

Our drive-through testing station at Constitution Park will be open again tomorrow on Monday February 28 from 9am-4pm, and testing will also still be available at Tupapa Primary Care by appointment from 9am-3pm, seven days a week.

To make your appointment and for directions if required, call 20065 or 20066.

RAT testing will also continue to be available at the airport testing station during Air Rarotonga operating hours for a fee of $10.TMO would like to urge all members of the public at this time to please get yourself tested for Covid-19 if you are displaying Covid-like symptoms, which most commonly include fever, cough, excess fatigue, sore throat or aches and pains. If you are feeling unwell, please stay home until you are able to get tested.

Covid-19 test results for those who have had a PCR test will be sent via text by TMO to the cellphone number provided. Test results will generally be available within 24 hours, but may take up to 48 hours to be processed.

It may not necessarily take the full 48 hours to get your test results back, but you MUST self-quarantine at your home or accommodation until you are contacted by TMO with your results and given the all-clear.

Finally, TMO would also like to remind all of our people of the extreme importance of mask-wearing at this time, as the Covid-19 virus begins to spread throughout our community.

While our high vaccination rate provides us with a good degree of overall protection from Covid-19, continuing to wear masks indoors, in crowded spaces or on public transport will also help limit the spread of this virus and in turn help protect the more vulnerable amongst us.

This is why it is so very important that we continue to observe our Covid-19 health and safety measures by wearing masks, maintaining physical distancing, tagging in with our CookSafe cards and practising good general hygiene.

TMO will continue to provide periodic public updates on our Covid-19 test numbers and results as the situation in the Cook Islands develops, as well as if any further new positive cases emerge.

The current locations (and dates) of interest are as follows (note that some times may overlap):

Thursday February 17
Rarotonga Rentals across from the airport (8.30am-4pm)

Friday February 18
Rarotonga Rentals across from the airport (8.30am-4pm)

Saturday February 19
Air NZ inbound flight NZ946, rows 53-55

Friday February 25
On The Rocks (OTR) nightclub and bar (11pm-2am)

ENDS: For more information, please visit or contact Shaun Bamber via email at or phone +682 54125.