Coronavirus: New Zealand in ‘good position’ to combat new Omicron variant – Ministry of Health – Newshub

Posted: November 28, 2021 at 9:45 pm

As a result of the Omicron variant, New Zealand has moved a number of southern African countries onto the 'very high risk' list in a bid to contain the Omicron's spread. These countries are: South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Seychelles, Malawi, and Mozambique. Only New Zealand citizens from these countries will be able to enter Aotearoa.

COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says this "precautionary approach" will "reduce the chance of Omicron entering New Zealand".

"[Returnees] will be required to stay in managed isolation for a full 14-day period and undergo testing. The extended MIQ requirement will also apply to those already in transit from these countries," Hipkins says.

"The newer model of seven days in managed isolation and three days at home for other returnees will continue there is still good evidence this model is safe and provides a high level of protection against the virus entering our communities.

"I am also assured by the fact that the number of travellers we get from each of these countries is low."

Hipkins said it was the Government's understanding that Omicron is "still very much in its infancy" and is confident it hasn't entered New Zealand. Whole genome sequencing is carried out routinely and all recent MIQ cases have been the Delta variant.

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Coronavirus: New Zealand in 'good position' to combat new Omicron variant - Ministry of Health - Newshub

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