New Zealand Man Shot Dead Officially Counted As ‘COVID Death’

Fact checked
New Zealand man shot to death officially counted as covid death

A man in New Zealand who was shot dead was counted as an official COVID death because he tested positive for the virus.

Yes, really.

Robert Hart, a 40-year-old who died on Nov. 5 after being shot in Auckland, tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a police report.

Latest Videos

“An additional death in Auckland has today been added to the national Covid-19 figures,” the New Zealand Ministry of Health said.

“This person’s death is subject to a police investigation and the Ministry will not be commenting further on it, at this stage.”

Washington Examiner report: Health officials were apparently able to test Hart for the coronavirus after his death.

“Health authorities may test a deceased person for COVID-19 if their cause of death is not clear and if there is some concern that COVID-19 may have been involved, for example, where there is a link to a known case, or considering symptoms prior to death,” a Ministry of Health spokesperson told the New Zealand Herald. “A deceased person testing positive for COVID-19 may also assist public health officials in identifying close contacts and taking any further action if needed.”

There was reportedly a change in the way New Zealand reports deaths that have any link to the coronavirus, even if COVID-19 wasn’t the cause, said Dr. Ashley Bloomfield, director-general of the country’s Health Ministry, at a briefing.

“The clinical criteria will continue to be guided by [World Health Organization] definition, which is basically to report any death where the person had an acute COVID-19 infection regardless of what the cause of death might be,” Bloomfield said about death reports in general. “We will be now publicly reporting confirmed deaths as those where the death documents or an investigation has shown that the cause was COVID-19, and we will report other deaths where the cause of death is not certain but the person has COVID-19. We will report them separately, and the latter group will be classified as ‘under investigation’ while we await further information from clinicians or a coroner’s follow-up.”

Many New Zealanders are protesting the country’s mandates on vaccines , masks, and lockdowns, notably with a mass demonstration in front of Wellington’s Parliament on Tuesday.