Saturday, November 27

Covid-19 lockdown day 9: how it unfolded

Covid-19 cases in the community continued to rise today, but Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the lockdown is already making a difference.

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Photo: RNZ / 123rf / Pool

At today’s briefing at 1:00 p.m. M. 68 new cases were seen in the community, bringing a total to 277, but Ardern said the first sign that the lockdown was taking effect was the fact that health authorities had not seen it spread beyond Auckland and Wellington, where there was a known link to the Auckland outbreak.

“If it weren’t for the lockdown, I’m sure we would have seen the cases spread even further,” Ardern said.

The second factor could be seen in the locations of interest, which were not growing at the same rate as the number of cases.

“That’s because people stay home.”

Ardern said that across all of the locations of interest reported on the ministry’s website, only 13 had currently generated additional cases.

A testing station has been established for the Assembly of God congregations in Māngere.

Photo: RNZ / Marika Khabazi

Vaccines reach 3 million

More than three million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in New Zealand, according to the Ministry of Health.

In a statement issued this afternoon, the Ministry said 1.94 million first doses and more than 1.07 million second doses have been administered.

Meanwhile, an iwi collective urges Maori to take their whānau for Covid hits without delay.

The Te Ranga Tupua collective of Ngā Rauru, Ngā Wairiki Ngāti Apa, Mōkai Pātea and Whanganui, which mobilized during last year’s outbreak, has been reactivated to help support local Maori during the latest outbreak.

“I think our people are starting to realize that this is serious and we have to immunize our whānau,” said spokesperson Pahia Turia, president of Ngā Wairiki Ngāti Apa.

“I encourage our whānau to get out there, take the initiative and lead by example.”

There were also some ongoing questions after RNZ revealed yesterday that the Highbrook vaccination center found five remaining doses on July 12.

That meant that five of the 732 people vaccinated that day could have been injected with a dose of harmless saline. The saline solution is used to dilute the vaccine after it has thawed.

Chief Health Officer Dr. Ashley Bloomfield said Morning report that the authorities always intended to tell people about it.

“We were getting advice on whether or not to give people an extra dose.

“There were some doubts about that, due to the uncertainty as to whether someone was lost in the first place.

“I am fully committed to the open disclosure of these events.”

Will we need a third hit?

A vaccine expert says that Covid-19 “booster” injections are not necessary at this time, but may be in the future.

A booster vaccine is being considered in other countries. The United States intends to implement them, considering a third “reload” around eight months after a second dose.

The director of the Immunization Counseling Center and GP, Dr. Nikki Turner, who advises the government on vaccines, explained why.

“Over time, our immune response decreases. If it decreases enough, you risk getting the disease again.

“So we give booster shots for many diseases to stop losing all immunity and continue to protect people in the long term.”

The lockdown can last a month – Hendy

Professor Shaun Hendy, who is a Covid-19 modeler at the University of Auckland, said that the current size of the outbreak far exceeded his initial estimates.

He said the majority of the cases that were reported were still people who were infected before the shutdown.

“This is telling us: we have a pretty big outbreak on our hands.”

“We are really seeing an outbreak now that is similar to one we treated in March and April of last year … which was on the order of about 1,000 cases.”

As such, Hendy said, Auckland residents should prepare to stay below level 4 for a period of time similar to last year – at least a month.

“Auckland people are used to it now. We have to put up with it.”

Erina Conroy, who is walking her dog Starcey in Manukau, told RNZ that she did not mind staying longer at Covid-19 level 4 as the priority is to contain the virus.

Erina Conroy, who is walking her dog Starcey in Manukau, told RNZ that she did not mind staying longer at Covid-19 level 4 as the priority is to contain the virus.

Photo: RNZ / Liu Chen

“Hang on” is exactly what some of the people RNZ spoke to today said they are happy to do.

Erina Conroy, who was walking her dog Starcey in the Manukau neighborhood, agreed.

“I think the more you stress about the things that you can’t do what you want to do … They’re not really a high priority right now … It’s just everyone’s safety as what I really have in mind,” she said. .

Hope Henare-Wynyard, from the same neighborhood, is staying with her grandmother and said that it has been difficult for extended family members who came to visit her often not to be able to do so, but it is a price worth paying.

“With the number of cases we have, I think it is appropriate that we remain on lockdown, and I think we should do whatever it takes to get New Zealand back to the way it was before this lockdown.”

Egmont Seafoods CEO Caleb Mawson said there were online and supermarket orders to fill, as well as a small quantity for exports.

Photo: RNZ / Robin Martin

Work, life and school are changing

Students have returned to distance learning for now, and the Ministry of Education has announced changes to this year’s NCEA exams to address the problems caused by the lockdown.

The Education Ministry told schools overnight that examinations would begin on Monday, November 22 and end on Friday, December 14, two weeks later than the original schedule in recognition of the disruption caused by the alert level 4 lockdown. .

He also indicated that more changes could be made, such as the reintroduction of learning recognition credits, once it was clearer how long the lockdown would last.

Many adults are also working from home and dealing with Zooms and constant Skype calls. Telecommunications commentator Paul Brislen spoke with RNZ today about best practices for these types of meetings.

“If you’re on a Zoom call or a Teams call or whatever version of video conferencing you’re using, turn on your cameras, let’s see what people’s backgrounds look like,” he said. Morning report.

But it’s not always easy, and there are fair privacy concerns, he admitted.

“I feel sorry for everyone who is forced into a situation where working from home involves sitting at the kitchen table, as a colleague of mine did with three other roommates on Zoom calls, all huddled at the same time. around a small student flat. ” he said.

And of course a lot of essential workers still have to leave home to do the work for the rest of us.

Lepperton farmer Mark Hooper is hitching his spreader to his tractor and is about to take advantage of the good weather and spread urea over his weary paddocks.

“It has been much more intense on the farm. It is the busiest time of the season.”

Waste Management driver Ravinder Singh, who was emptying wheeled bins in New Plymouth, was business as usual.

“Well, someone has to work, you know, we’re the front-line workers, so the industry we’re in is more essential. Priority ones. You know, it’s quiet on the roads and easier for us.”

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