Live: Isolation period reduced

Minister for Covid-19 Response Chris Hipkins announced today.

The isolation period for Covid-19 cases and their household contacts will be reduced from 10 to seven days, Minister for Covid-19 Response Chris Hipkins announced today.

“We remain committed to reducing the spread of Omicron to protect our health system and each other. However high case numbers and household contacts, and the current 10 day isolation requirement, is having a wider impact on many parts of our lives.

“There needs to be a balance between effectively controlling the outbreak and the flow-on effect for business and essential goods and services such as transport and food supply.

“The most up to date public health advice is that there is a decline in infectiousness of Omicron over time, and that in most cases transmission occurs within seven days.

“Our primary objective is to stop the chain of transmission as much as possible to manage the spread of Omicron. Seven days isolation will break the vast majority of potential transmissions, while ensuring people can get back to work quicker and therefore reducing the impact on business operations.”

The change will come into effect from 11.59pm Friday, March 11.

Household contacts will need to have a rapid antigen test at day 3 and day 7 of their isolation period.

If they become symptomatic they should also get a test, and if the result is positive, they are required to isolate for seven days from that point.

If a person is isolating and still has symptoms after seven days, they are advised to stay home until 24 hours after symptoms resolve.

“I urge everyone to make sure they report their rapid antigen test result on My Covid Record, even if it is negative, so we can understand transmission within households and how the outbreak is spreading through communities,” says Hipkins.

“The reduction in the isolation period follows similar changes overseas and increasing evidence that people are most likely to transmit the virus earlier in their infectious period. This evidence also shows that the risk of reinfection within the first three months after someone has Omicron is very low.

“For this reason, recovered cases will no longer need to self-isolate if they become a household contact within 90 days after having the virus. This is an increase from the current 28 days.

“Under the Red setting of the Covid-19 Protection Framework there are additional public health measures in place that reduce the risk of onwards infection. These include limits on the sizes of gatherings, wearing face masks and physically distancing. I urge people to follow these guidelines to continue to protect our vulnerable friends and family.”

Novavax available to book from tomorrow

New Zealanders awaiting the arrival of Novavax to get vaccinated against Covid-19 will be able to make an appointment online or by phone from tomorrow.

A shipment of more than 250,000 Novavax Covid-19 vaccines (Nuvaxovid) has arrived in New Zealand and preparations are well advanced for some vaccination centres to be able to offer it next week.

“Novavax will be available for people aged over 18. It requires two doses, with a three week gap. It has not been approved as a booster dose," says Hipkins.

“While the Pfizer vaccine remains the preferred Covid-19 vaccine in New Zealand, Novavax is now available for those people who would prefer, or require, an alternative.”

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Change, Change, Change

Posted on 09-03-2022 23:33 | By Yadick

So many changes and the whole nation is supposed to keep up with it. Forget the bloody mandates and roll with it and wear KN95 Masks, end of story. Why is this mandate coming in, in 48hrs. Just bring it in now because apart from the goodie goodies it’s already taking affect. The Government have no idea at all as to what they are doing. If they did we wouldn’t get the changes week in, week out. This is just RIDICULOUS.


Posted on 09-03-2022 19:16 | By Slim Shady

We’ve got people testing positive and ignoring isolation. We’ve got people testing negative but saying it’s positive so they can have a week off work. We’ve got people who can’t be bothered getting tested no matter what. Nobody is scanning because it’s pointless. And this bloke still thinks he’s in charge. What a deluded fool.

Rules obsessed

Posted on 09-03-2022 13:55 | By Slim Shady

Contacts still need to have a test on day 3 and day 7 he says! And who is checking on that Hipkins? - let me tell you - nobody. These people just love standing up and making up rules. The reality is is that everyone is self managing through this by being sensible, proportionate and practical - unlike the Government. Full of their own importance.

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