There are no new coronavirus cases in the community and four in managed isolation, the Ministry of Health has revealed.
Today’s Covid-19 update is the last one before the Australian travel bubble opens at 11.59pm tonight.
It has been almost two months since the last community case was detected in New Zealand.
Today’s update will focus on how many cases are in MIQ and where the new cases have come from.
The last update by the Ministry of Health revealed just one case of Covid-19 in MIQ – someone who had arrived in New Zealand on March 30.
They had travelled from India – a country New Zealand has temporally suspended travel from, given the high number of Covid-19 cases.
Last week, Indian officials reported there had been 200,000 new confirmed cases of the virus in a day.
As the country remains on the no-travel list, Prime Minister Jacinda Adern said Government officials are looking into ways of reducing the Covid risk for New Zealanders travelling from India.
Speaking to Q&A this morning, Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said there were two main things the Government had been looking at.
The first was more could be done on the ground in India to reduce the risk of people with Covid-19 getting on a plane to New Zealand.
The second was how the Government could best manage the risk when New Zealanders, travelling from India, arrived home.
“We will have announcements on that shortly. We’re working our way through the advice we’re getting from officials on that,” Hipkins said.
But he said it would include the pre-departure regime and whether more could be done in that space.
“On the New Zealand side, one of the things we will look at is cohorting.
“We’re already doing planeloads of people together, but we will look at whether there is more we can do to further strengthen our cohorting of arrivals to manage that risk.”
He suggested grouping the cohorts who flew together in the same MIQ facility when they arrive in New Zealand.
Today’s Covid-19 is the last one before the transtasman bubble official opens.
From tomorrow, Australians will be allowed to travel to New Zealand and not have to stay in MIQ for two weeks.
The bubble will be a lifeline to some tourism operators who, before the pandemic, relied on overseas travellers for their income.
But Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, initially, the bubble would be a way for people on both sides of the Tasman to reconnect.
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