New Zealand imposes additional Covid restrictions as cases rise

New Zealand plans to introduce additional Covid restrictions under its current “orange tuning rules” in response to the skyrocketing number of cases.

New Zealand plans to introduce additional Covid restrictions under its current “orange tuning rules” in response to the skyrocketing number of cases.

Under current regulations, marked in orange for the second most restrictive setting in the country’s traffic light system, the Kiwis are told they can go about their daily business but that they “must protect our vulnerable communities.”

This means that the government directs them to wear a mask in many areas, but there are no restrictions on gatherings or distancing requirements.

However, the rules may become stricter.

New Zealand Herald reports that the National Minister for Covid Response, Ayesha Verrol, will “outline some changes to the rules for setting the orange color regarding masks and isolation periods” tomorrow.

But switching to red under the traffic light system was “not planned,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, speaking from the Pacific Islands Forum in Fiji.

Ms Ardern said it was about what measures would affect the numbers.

Stream the latest COVID-19 news with Flash. 25+ news channels in 1 place. New to Flash? Try 1 month for free. Offer valid until October 31, 2022>

“We know what they are. Isolation, if you have Covid, noticeably reduces the infection rate of others. Equally important is isolating your household with you. Use of masks and vaccinations. Those are the three things that will have the biggest impact on our performance.”

The numbers were rising and people who previously had Covid-19 were re-infecting, so Ms Ardern asked people to wear masks, get boosters and isolate.

“These are the most important things we can do right now, far beyond additional measures. [of] collection limits, which in this environment would not have the same impact.”

She said that Ms Verrall, the Covid Response Minister, will outline on Thursday what more can be done to focus on those three elements beyond what is already happening.

Community Covid cases topped 11,000 today for the second day in a row.

There were 11,464 new cases of Covid in the community, as well as another 29 Covid-related deaths. This has happened in the last five days.

The seven-day rolling average of cases is 9,710 – last week it was 7,591.

There are currently 67,926 active cases in the community.

The ministry said 355 Covid cases had recently arrived from abroad.

Yesterday, the Ministry of Health reported that there were 11,548 community cases and 19 Covid-related deaths.

Covid-19 models say community cases could reach 20,000 in the coming weeks and likely mean many more deaths.

As of yesterday, the seven-day rolling average of cases in the community was 9279 – up from 7053 this time last week.

Dr. Michael Plank announced this. Herald that New Zealand is “definitely in the second wave”.

“He has the potential to become quite serious. The number of hospitalizations is now skyrocketing and this is worrying because the healthcare system has already been overwhelmed with winter sickness and influenza.”

Dr Plank said the use of masks will continue to be critical to flattening the outbreak curve and while New Zealanders are relatively good at mask wearing, there is still room for improvement.

“We’re probably still better at using masks here than in a lot of places that I think are out of the habit.

“That’s not to say there’s no room for improvement, because there is, and the masks will be critical to flattening the wave.”

Originally published as New Zealand imposes additional Covid restrictions as cases rise