The Prime Minister has just announced a significant escalation in New Zealand’s response to COVID-19. By midnight on Wednesday New Zealand will be at alert level 4, which means that only essential healthcare services – in hospitals, general practice, pharmacy, and elsewhere in the community - will remain open. All other services will be shut down nationally. This will mean that almost all planned care, including surgery, will be postponed.
From a public health perspective, this is the right decision. It allows us the very best opportunity to stop and contain the spread of COVID-19 in Aotearoa. If we all do our bit, unite against COVID-19 and follow official advice we have the best chance of protecting ourselves and our loved ones.