Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins states that the Omicron variant “is not the cause of panic” as New Zealand experts are tracking overseas impacts.Video / pool
As New Zealand reaches the final day of the Covid-19 alert level system, the epidemic of new viral variants raises new global warnings.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said yesterday that the overall risk of new variants is considered to be very high due to the high transmission rates that could lead to “further surges with serious consequences”. Encouraged each country to prepare for Omicron.
Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins admitted that it is probably inevitable that Omicron will eventually arrive in New Zealand.
But he said there was no need for a panic and the government was preparing for new stocks.
WHO has urged unvaccinated, ill, or over 60 years old to postpone travel to areas with cases of Omicron.
It has extended advice to people with comorbidities such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
“Preliminary evidence suggests an increased risk of reinfection with this mutant compared to other mutants of concern,” WHO added.
Australia, Denmark and the Netherlands are reporting cases of Omicron as scientists are competing to learn more about the infectiousness and pathogenicity of the subspecies.
New Zealand has addressed Omicron by designating nine southern African countries as “extremely risky” and restricting travel from these countries.
Travel to these countries is currently limited to New Zealand citizens, their partners or dependent children, and parents of dependent children who are New Zealand citizens.
Despite the emergence of Omicron, the risk designation remains Was in the netherlands At least 5 days before South Africa announces the existence of the variant.
Hypkins said the designations of South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia, Malawi, Eswatini, Lesotho and Seychelles are constantly being reviewed.
“We want to try to minimize the chances of that chain of virus invading New Zealand, or at least delay it as much as possible,” he said.
WHO said the total travel ban put a heavy burden on people’s lives and livelihoods and did not hinder its international spread.
The travel ban could also remove the incentive for the country to report and share epidemiological and sequencing data, the organization said.
WHO praised South Africa and Botswana for the steps taken to contain Omicron. However, some countries have suddenly severe travel bans.
Australia has suspended all flights to and from nine African countries and banned foreigners traveling to these countries in the last two weeks.
Domestically, a new traffic light system is approaching, and the coupon plan announced yesterday aimed at stimulating local businesses has fallen like a cold illness with restaurant owners.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern discussed the plan at an outdoor press conference at the Auckland Zoo while spider monkeys were devouring in the background.
Auckland citizens 100,000 vouchers will be offered this summer For activities. The $ 37 million scheme allows families to sign up for discounts and vouchers at Auckland attractions.
However, the reaction of the restaurant association was burned.
“We are absolutely crushed by Auckland’s business, which has been closed for several months and has nothing left in this package,” said an industry group.
“For 475 days we asked for targeted support, but all the phones were deaf.”
In response, Hypkins at a Beehive press conference yesterday said restaurants would benefit from the activation of pandemic-enabled travel on new traffic lights.
From 11:59 pm tonight, the country will abolish the four-level alert level system. Hypkins said he would be able to open a restaurant for customers with a vaccine pass and was expecting a lot of consumer demand.
The minister said the voucher was designed to give people the confidence to escape and thanked the government for the sacrifice of the blocked Auckland citizens.
Hypkins, who joined Ashley Bloomfield’s health director, also revealed that the government was planning to vaccinate more children.
The new vaccine initiative targeted people aged 5 to 11 years. These children were at lower risk of the direct health effects of Covid-19 than adults, but Hipkins added that “Covid-19 can still have serious health effects on them.”
The Children’s Commissioner Francis Avers welcomed the planned deployment of the New Year’s vaccine for children of this age group.
“This not only protects them, but also protects the community,” Ivers said.
She urged the government to work swiftly with Maori, pediatric immunization specialists, schools and communities on the deployment of vaccines.
Children under the age of 12 develop a Covid-19 infection and may inherit the infection, Dr. Amanda Kvarsvig told the Science Media Center.
She said future traffic light systems will rely heavily on high immunization rates.
“As we see repeatedly in other countries, when a case occurs in the community, it is worrisome because vaccination alone is not enough to stop the outbreak.”
She said clear health advice from the government was needed for outdoor exercise and meetings, and indoor door and window opening.
Kvalsvig said this summer that adequate ventilation and the use of face masks are important to keep Covid-19 away.
“Importantly, they will continue to work regardless of which Covid-19 variants are in circulation.”
Outbreak of Covid 19 Delta: The final day of alert levels opens as Omicron destabilizes global travel
SourceOutbreak of Covid 19 Delta: The final day of alert levels opens as Omicron destabilizes global travel