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Genome Sequence - 22 year old Korean traveller - 21/22 July 2020

Bronwyn Pullar made this Official Information request to Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited

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From: Bronwyn Pullar

Dear Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited,

Under the Official Information Act 1982, I request the following information:

1. What steps, if any, has Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited (ESR) taken to establish the specific genome sequencing of the strain of Covid-19 virus acquired by the 22 year old traveller who left NZ on 21 July 2020 and tested positive via a Rapid Test upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020, and who again tested positive in the subsequent PCR tests?

2.Has ESR obtained the genome sequence for the Covid-19 virus for the 22 year old traveller who departed NZ on 21 July 2020 and tested positive upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020 from South Korean health officials and laboratories? If not, why not?

3. Has ESR, or NZ Health Officials on your behalf, asked counterparts in South Korean to provide a sample of the Covid-19 virus acquired for the 22 year old traveller who departed NZ on 21 July 2020, then tested positive upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020, so that genome sequencing could be performed by ESR in NZ? If not, why not?

4. Has ESR received a sample of the Covid-19 virus for the 22 year old traveller who departed NZ on 21 July 2020 and tested positive upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020 from South Korean health officials and laboratories to analyse? If not, why not?

5. Has ESR, or your agents, established the genome sequence for the virus acquired by the 22 year old traveller who departed NZ on 21 July 2020 and tested positive upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020? If not, why not? If so, what is the specific genome sequence?

6. What steps, if any, has ESR taken to establish whether, or not, the strain of Covid-19 virus acquired by the 22 year old traveller who left NZ on 21 July 2020, and then tested positive upon arrival in South Korea on 22 July 2020, is the same strain as the current Auckland community outbreak where the Americold Mount Wellington worker was the first known case?

Yours faithfully,

Bronwyn Pullar

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From: Jill Vintiner
Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited

Dear Bronwyn,

Thank you for your email and I acknowledge receipt of your OIA request. A further response will follow once the content of your request has been considered. Kind Regards, Jill.

Dr Jill Vintiner
Chief Operations Officer, Health and Environmental Business Group.
Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited (ESR)
Mt Albert Science Centre: 120 Mt Albert Road, Sandringham, Auckland 1025
Private Bag 92021, Auckland 1142, New Zealand

DDI: +64 9 815 4670 / M: +64 27 654 6643 / T: +64 9 815 3670 / EXTN: 6670
E: [email address]
www.esr.cri.nz

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