Practice English Speaking&Listening with: COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) update – 9 April, 2020

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Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Good afternoon, everyone.

Welcome to day 15.

I'm going to start by handing over to Dr Bloomfield to give us an update on the latest case numbers.

Then we'll come back to me and I'll be giving a slightly longer speech given the milestone

that we have reached recently with lock down at Alert Level 4.

Dr Bloomfield, I hand over to you.

Thank you, kia ora.

So today.

. there, are 29 new cases of.

COVID-19 to report.


. comprises of 23 new cases and.

6 probable cases.

No. . additional deaths to report, . however, we do have 14 people.

. in hospital, and that includes.

four in ICU.

They are in North.

. Shore, Middlemore, Dunedin and.

Wellington regional hospitals.

. . We now have 317 reported cases.

of COVID-19 we can confirm.

. have recovered that's an.

increase of 35 on yesterday.

. . So today's number of recovered.

cases at 35 is higher than the.

. number of new cases at 29.


combined new total of.

. confirmed and probable cases.

is 1, 239.

For the cases we. . have information on, we have a.

strong link to overseas.

. travel.

41% of cases - that.

continues to decline.


. contacts of other cases in New.

Zealand, and 2% of community.

. transmission.

13% of cases are.

still under investigation.

We. . still have the 12 significant.

clusters, and the three.

. largest at Matamata with 64.

. The Bluff wedding with 87, and.

. the Marist College cluster.

with 84 cases.

. . In terms of laboratory.

testing, yesterday, there were.

. 3, 990 tests processed, and the.

total number of tests.

. undertaken to date has.

increased accordingly.

I'll. . just find the correct number.


But our 7-day rolling.

. average of tests is 3, 547 per.


We still have good test.

. capacity and that continues to.

increase, as supplies come in.

. as expected this week.

A quick.

word on the clusters.

We spoke.

. about those yesterday.

We do.

take a particular interest.

. there, because when we have a.

cluster, either in a place, . . geographical place or at an.

event, or in a particular.

. location like a workplace or a.

school, there is the potential.

. for quite rapid spread there, . and our intention is then to.

. try to refix those clusters as.

quickly as possible and stop.

. any further spread.

So we do.

know that our ability to.

. contain those clusters has.

been greatly enhanced because.

. we are in the Alert Level 4.

lockdown situation.

So we're.

. confident now that we are on.

top of those clusters and that.

. any additional cases are.

largely within bubbles within.

. each of those clusters.

We've. also worked to streamline.

. information flows between the.

district health boards, . . ourselves and ESR, to ensure.

that we're able to get on top. . of those clusters to contain.

them, to get good information.

. about the timing of the onset. of symptoms and of diagnosis.

. of new cases.

And also the.

proportion of close contacts.

. that we are successfully.


And just to help.

. reassure me about that contact.

tracing system, I've asked.

. infectious diseases specialist.

Dr Varal to do a review of.

. that today.

I'm meeting with.

her later in the day and look.

. forward to getting her views.

on how robust our process is, . . and whether there are any.

improvements that we could.

. make to it.

And finally, just. on flu vaccination - we've now.

. distributed over one million.

doses of the vaccine around.

. the Motu.

They are in general.

practices, pharmacies and in.

. district health boards.


are good supplies in every.

. region.

I have looked at the.


We have sufficient.

. vaccine for all our priority.

groups, and I encourage those.

. people to call their GP or.

their pharmacy and make a time.

. to go in and be vaccinated.

. And Associate Health Minister.

. Julie Anne Genter announced.

earlier today, we are.

. extending for two weeks, out.

to the end of April, the time.

. for those priority groups to.

be vaccinated, and those who. . are not in priority groups, . just to wait until after


. time to get their vaccination.

. And finally, please, if you.

. have any health conditions.

that you require care for, or. . an acute condition that you.

have, contact your usual.

. healthcare or talk to.


We really want.

. people to keep showing up for. and seeking care that they.

. need and not delaying care so.

that they end up being worse.

. off.

So all I have to say.

. Today is day 15 of alert level4.

At this roughly halfwaymark, I have no hesitation insaying that what NewZealanders have done

over thelast two weeks is huge.

In theface of the greatest threat tohuman health that we havefaced in over a century,

Kiwishave quietly and collectivelyimplemented a nationwide wallof defence.

You are breakingthe transmission and you didit for each other.

As aGovernment, we have hadpandemic notices.

We've hadpowers that come with being ina national emergency.

But youheld the greatest power ofall.

You made the decisionthat, together, we couldprotect one another, and youhave.

You have saved lives.

Modelling provided to myoffice by economist RodneyJones on the eve of thelockdown suggested

New Zealandwas on a similar trajectory topotentially Italy, or evenSpain.

And that our 205 caseson 25 March could have grownto over 10, 000 by now withoutthe actions

we have takentogether.

And new modelling, due to be released later thisafternoon, suggests that thecurrent controls

at alertlevel 4, have already had asignificant impact on new casenumbers and we are on track

tomeet their most optimisticscenario.

Instead of thehorrific scenes we've seenabroad, we are at 1, 239 cases, and the total number

of caseshas fallen for the last fourdays, as Dr Bloomfield said to29 cases today, the

lowestnumber since 25 March, beforethe lockdown began.

We areturning a corner, and yourcommitment means our plan isworking.

But to succeed, weneed it to keep working.

Success does not mean changingthe course.

Removingrestrictions would allow thevirus to rapidly spread onceagain, and we would

be back tothe starting line within twoweeks.

That's also why we willkeep enforcing the rules.

Inaddition, you will see anincrease in police enforcementin recent days.

I expect thatto continue, including roadblocks in some places thisEaster weekend.

While most aredoing the right thing, someare not.

We cannot let theselfish actions of a few setus back, and we won't.

Especially after everythingthat people have sacrificed.

Ihave read messages of thosewho have lost loved ones whocouldn't come together togrieve

for them.

I readstories of brand new parents, whose most joyful time hasbeen made more difficultbecause

of separation.

Businesses who are worried fortheir livelihoods, and for thefamily that are theiremployees.

I am acutely awareof the pain many NewZealanders are feeling.

Overone million of our fellowcitizens are now supported bya wage subsidy - many of whomwill

be experiencing a cut inincome.

At the end of March, there were already an extra4, 866 Kiwis on a benefit, andlast week,

that numberincreased by another 10,000.

Many businesses are alsoreporting that they may not beable to reopen at the end ofthe


I want to giveyou all the assurance that Ican, that the health and wellbeing of you and ourcommunities

has always been onour minds as we have madedecisions on COVID-19.

But sohas your livelihoods.

We willcontinue to stand alongsideyou.

We've made recordinvestments to keep as manybusinesses as possible afloatand people in jobs.

We'redoing what we can to cushionthe blow and plan for ourrecovery.

But as I've said, this is going to be amarathon.

Our plan for thatmarathon is to keepeliminating the virus from NewZealand.

We can do that bykeeping it out of the country, but also by rapidly stampingout any outbreaks

that flareup.

And that plan is the verybest thing that we can do forthe New Zealand economy.

Thebest economic responsecontinues to be a stronghealth response.

And that'swhy I'm announcing the nextstage of initiatives to scaleup our health response

to putus in the best possibleposition to exit Level 4 andprepare for Level 3.

No matterwhat level we are at in thefuture, there are three areaswhere we need to become


Firstly, our bordersmust be tightly managed.

That's why from midnighttonight, every New Zealanderboarding a flight to returnhome,

will be required toundergo quarantine, or what wehave called "managedisolation" in an

approvedfacility for a minimum of 14days.

I am also signallingthat the requirement for 14days of quarantine or managedself-isolation

in a Governmentapproved solution will be aprerequisite for anyoneentering the country in orderto

keep the virus out.

As anisland nation, we have adistinct advantage in ourability to eliminate thevirus, but our

borders arealso our biggest risk.

As aGovernment, we have goneharder earlier with bordermeasures compared to othercountries.

But even one personslipping through the cracksand bringing the virus in cansee an explosion

in cases, aswe have observed with some ofour biggest clusters.

Thequarantining of returning NewZealanders will be asignificant undertaking.

Forcontext - nearly 40, 000 NewZealanders have returned homesince 20 March when we closedthe

border to foreignNationals.

That is more thanall of the hotel rooms acrossthe country that we could haveproperly housed

people in.

There has always been urgencyaround this matter, but simplyput, we could not have done itfrom

the beginning.

But wecan, and are, doing it now.

Anetwork of up to 18 hotelswill be used to implement thisapproach.

Of which, one or twowill be specifically put asidefor the strict quarantineconditions.

And just as areminder, for those travellerswho are symptomatic, or arebeing tested for COVID-19.

Thesecond aspect of our ongoingCOVID response issignificantly scaled up andfaster contact

tracing andgreater use of technology.

Themore we move to improve thespeed and effectiveness of ourcontact tracing, the betterplaced we

will be in breakingthe chain of transmission.

TheMinistry of Health is alreadyworking on a locally developedapp to assist with contacttracing.

I should caution thatit is in the early stages.

Itwill have basic functionality, but even that will beimportant as it will helpupdate

our national healthdatabase with user contactdetails.

Then they will lookto add functions.

We areinvestigating the SingaporeanGovernment's Bluetooth basedapp, Trace Together, that canrecord

interactions between aphone and any other phonesnearby that have the appinstalled.

I should caution, that it will often pick upphones at quite a distance, soit is not

perfect technology.

The data is stored on thephone, and if the user testspositive, they release thedata to

the Government forcontact tracing.

Closecontacts can then beautomatically notified if theyneed to self-isolate.

Singapore are planning to opensource their technology in thenext few weeks.

We have madeinitial contact with theSingaporean Government andregistered our interest, and

Ihave a phone call with PM Liof Singapore this eveningwhere I'll be discussing thistechnology


I do, again, think it is importantto note that these kinds ofapps are useful, but theydon't

solve everything.

What'smost important is that youhave good people, and enoughpeople, working on contacttracing

as quickly aspossible.

We do and wecontinue to improve every day, as Dr Bloomfield set out.

Finally, this ongoing planjust be underpinned bytesting.

We already haveincredibly high rates oftesting compared to others, but we want to be even


We will be maintaining highlevels of testing, andsupplementing it withadditional testing

to ensurewe have greater levels ofcertainty around the declinein the virus's spread.

Withthese three pillars - bordercontrols, rigorous testing andcontact tracing, and makingsure,

of course, that we useall of the technologyavailable, we have what weneed to win this marathon.

ButI know in a race, it'simportant to have sign posts.

To know where we are andexactly what we need to dowhen we get there so we canall have a


Let me setout some of the timelines thenfor some key decisions thatwill affect everyone.

Level 4has come with some heavyrestrictions that has requireddifficult decisions aroundservices

and businesses thatcan and cannot operate.

Weneed to give similar detailedguidance on what life at Level3 look like, and we will

dothat next week.

That will giveus a window to iron outquestions and issue, and makesure we're as prepared

as wecan be when it comes time toeventually move.

It is then myintention that on 20 April, two days before the lockdownis due to finish,

Cabinet willmake a decision on our nextsteps.

That's because we needto use the most up to datedata that we to make thatdecision.

That means if we areready to move to alert level3, if we are ready to move toalert level

3, business willhave two days to implementarrangements.

But let me sayagain - we will not be movingout of level 4 early.

If wemove too early, we will gobackwards.

In the meantime, Iask every business to use thetime that you have to preparefor what every

alert levelmeans for you.

Treat COVID-19like a health and safetyissue.

Ask whether it'spossible for your business tooperate with socialdistancing?

Can you build incontact tracing tools ormechanisms to keep track ofyour supply chain andcustomers?

Help us get readyas a nation for the marathonthat we must run together.

Ido know that we can do this, and I know that because we arealready.

So as we head intoEaster I say - thank you toyou and your bubble.

You havestayed calm.

You've stayedstrong and saved lives and nowto keep going.

Happy to takequestions.

Our messageto businesses now is preparenow.

Prepare now for everyalert level.

You will begetting the data that we'remaking our decisions on inreal time, and only a fewhours

after we receive it.

Butwe need to make sure that wedon't move too early.

If wedo, we risk losing all of thegains we've made.

REPORTER: Quarantine, whatwill that look like for peoplewho are there?

Will they beable to leave at all?

And forwhat reasons?

And how willthey be supervised?

So just togive you the clear distinctionbetween what we're operatingand we're operating thisalready.

But what's differentis now everybody who arriveswill either be put intoquarantine, or what we'recalling


Both areutilising at present, hotels.

The difference betweenquarantine is that's where ourpeople who are symptomatic orbeing

tested for COVID-19 go, and they cannot leave theirrooms.

They must stay wherethey are.

Someone in assistedself-isolation is able toleave their room for a walk orfresh air,

but nothing else.

So they are very similar.

Doyou want to add anything onthat Dr Bloomfield on thedistinctions?

I think just onthe latter, PM.

We recall whenwe brought the flight back outof Wuhan and we had people atWhunaparoa, we will

make surethat they're looked after, andnot putting others at risk.

But yes, they will be able toget outside for fresh air andnot confined for there.

REPORTER: What about whatAustralia is doing?

Just to beclear, for background.

We evensentially are - everyone whocomes into the New Zealandborder must go into a hotelthat

is being provided by theNew Zealand Government.

Theycannot go home for 14 days.

Soessentially, they are.

Thereason we just used the word"quarantine" is that it comeswith different legal powers.

So quarantine applies to thosewho are simple tomorrowaticand being treated forCOVID-19.

-- symptomatic.

Butto be clear, everyone goesinto a managed facility.

Atthe moment, we're utilisingthe skills of public health toparticularly monitor those

whoare symptomatic, and we arealso using the police tomonitor the facilities.

Thereis a reason also that we'vebeen using particular hotels.

We need to make sure that wecan keep them secure, and ofcourse, we've got the abilityto

keep an eye on people'smovements within the hotel, and also, it means that we canhave

people in the samefacility without being incontact with each other.

Sothese are all assessed to makesure that we can keep peoplesafe and distant from oneanother,

and those are thekinds of hotels that we'rechoosing.

REPORTER: how long are youplanning for this regime to bein place?

There is no endpoint as yet.

This will be amar And our borders willcontinue to be a high riskelement for New Zealand.

Webenefit from a very largemoat, but we need to make themost of it and manage andassess

every single person whois coming into the country.

Icannot give you an end datefor when that will cease.

REPORTER: The number of peoplearriving has been 300 fewerover the last week.

It has.

REPORTER: Why not implementthis a week ago?

Of course, wehave been operating thissystem for some time.

Wealready have roughly 1, 000people in motels.

90, forgiveme, 155 on top of that, whoare considered in formalquarantine.

So we have alreadybeen operating this systemnow.

It's operating foreveryone.

You would have heardfrom the numbers I gave - wehave for a significant amountof time had

a large number ofpeople coming through.

40, 000, more than we could haveaccommodated.

Now we have moreconsistent numbers so therules will apply for everyone.

REPORTER: The lockdown ishaving a significant impactupon the economy.

The benefitnumbers showed us that today.

To what degree will the impacton the economy factor into thedecision making process aboutwhen

to lift the lockdown?

Andit already does, because thebest thing that we can do forour economy is get our healthresponse


That is how westop ourselves from beingItaly, from being Spain, frombeing the UK, who have

had tohave extended periods oflockdown, which then has asignificant impact on theeconomy.

The sooner we get ontop of the virus and havecontrol of it, the sooner wecan start lifting some

ofthose restrictions and helpget our economy moving again.

REPORTER: Will Kiwis at theborder have to pay for thehotel rooms?

At this point, because we've wanted to movewith speed, the Governmentwill be providing thesefacilities,

but we willcontinue to do that andproviding controls over theweeks and months, because

theyare likely to be a part of oursystem for some time to come.

So we have not ruled out usingthings like co-payments toprovide that in the future,

but for the sake of gettingthis up and running now, wehave moved to provide it.

REPORTER: Will the DefenceForce be used to enforce thequarantines?

At the moment, we've been using the police, but we've always been open tousing a range

of differentenforcement forces in order tobring surety to New Zealandersthat people are doing

whatthey're meant to.

Keeping inmind, as well, and the hotelfacilities, we can keep an eyeon people's movements.

Theyhave security arrangementsattached to them.

REPORTER: It's a sustainednumber today and likely todrop.

How like lie is it thatthe numbers that we'll see inthe days forward?

Or thepotential for another spike?It's hard to predict thefuture, I've found.

But it isencouraging, as the PM said.

This is the fourth day in arow where we've seen a dropday on day.

So we're expectingthe numbers to continue tostay low.

There may be the oddbump up and down.

And we knowwe're still.

. . We are stillfinding and confirming the oddcase from some of theclusters.

Those we are hopingwill be the main stay of ouradditional cases.

Theimportant thing here is thoselab testing numbers and ourintention, as the PM said,

tokeep testing widely, to besure that we are finding anycases.

So very wide testing ofanyone with influenza likeillness symptoms.

REPORTER: Will the Governmentcommit to deleting all of thedata that's there when thepandemic

is over?

Ultimately, it would be around how longyou were trying to manageCOVID-19 generally.

But I canbe very clear, that the onlyreason that we would beutilising the app would be

tomanage outbreaks of COVID, soit would only be a tool usedfor health for healthpurposes.

I had explained tome last night that health isworking very closely withthose who need

to make surethat we're overseeing privacyconcerns.

So they're reachingout to the PrivacyCommissioner, and to those whomay have security concerns.

REPORTER: Will people havesome sort of detail over theirpersonal information?

Theywould choose whether they haveit or are a part of it?

That'sa feature of many of thecountries that have used theapps, they've been voluntary.

But I have to say, for it tobe successful, we would needwide uptake, so we wouldreally

need the public to buyinto the idea that this wouldhelp to protect them andprotect their


Didyou want to add anything onthe app?

Just that we're verycareful billion any of thesedevelopments in health, tobalance up

people's privacyissue and their confidencethat their health informationor any information

about theirhealth is being safeguarded.

And only used for thatpurpose.

So we will apply thesame level of rigour to thesedevelopments.

REPORTER: PM, not being ableto attend continues to be anarea of distress for Maori.

Given for what qualifies as anessential item or essentialwork, looks to be beingadjusted

as we go.

Why nothave restrictions around tangihanga instead of a ban outsideof the bubble.

Haverestrictions around thingslike hygiene, and a cap ofmaybe ten people.

Why notrestrict it to protect whanau, instead of a blanket ban andtrust whanau to stick

to that?One of the reasons and all ofthe assessments that we'vemade about what is essentialand

not, is how to limiteveryone's contact with oneanother to the bare minimum.

So, there are some parts ofour lives, where actually, contact is just built in.

Andif you look at the areas wherewe have clusters of cases, they're just a slice of lifein Aotearoa.

They're weddings.

You know, they're functionswhere loved ones have gottogether before weddings.

They're rugby teams.

They'resocial occasions, becausethat's when we really arephysically close to oneanother.

And that tales wherewe haven't been able to letany room for that kind ofcontact to happen,

and I knowhow horrific that is fortangi.

I've watched friendswho have had to go throughfunerals throughlivestreaming, and that justfeels wrong

for NewZealanders.

But it's the onlyway that we can protect oneanother.

REPORTER: Showing trust in NewZealanders like peoplereturning from overseas inweeks past,

to self-isolate athome.

There's a trust therefor New Zealanders to followthe rules.

Why not trustpeople to follow the rules andpreamble a set for theGovernment?

Because the rulesare - stay away from eachother.

Not come in contactwith one another.

Not interactwith anyone who is not in yourbubble, and that fundamentallygoes against everything

thattangi is about.

So that placesa huge burden for anyoneholding a tangi for anyoneholding a funeral.

So ifsomeone you've lost is in yourbubble, you can be there forthem.

But for anyone else, wejust haven't been able to letthat in, because that, ultimately, could

lead toother people becoming ill.

REPORTER: The passing ofesteemed Maori leader, what doyou know of his contributionto New

Zealand, and what wordsto you have for the whanau?

Iam so sorry that people arelosing loved ones, particularly those of highesteem in our communitiesduring

this period of time.

And I know this is coldcomfort, but I hope for all ofthose whanau who have lostloved

ones at level four, thatthere will be a time and aplace where people can beproperly recognised

and peoplecan properly gather.

REPORTER: Dr Bloomfield, twonurses have contractedCOVID-19 at.

Why aren't youcalling for mandatory use ofmasks for all hospital staffand the public right

now?We've provided very goodguidance to all of theworkforce, whether it isinside hospitals

or outside, on the use of PPE, includingmasks.

And inside hospitals, Ithink you'll have seen thatthere is quite wide use ofmasks.

But the guidance isgood.

It's based on the adviceof specialists.

And likewise, it's consistent with theadvice from the WHO, and thatincludes the advice

for thegeneral public in terms ofwearing masks.

REPORTER: How many staff orpatients at the hospital arebeing tested for COVID-19?There

are the two nurses whoare the cases on a ward, andthat ward has been lockeddown.

And the medical officerof health will make a decisionabout who needs testing.

Inthat sort of setting, we woulduse testing of asymptomaticpeople, including other staffmembers

and those in thewards.

But I don't have thenumbers as yet.

REPORTER: You say thatguidance is good, but clearlynot good enough if two nurseshave contracted


Whatwe don't know is where theycontracted it, and it may bethat it wasn't in theworkplace.

That's part of theinvestigation is to look intothat.

REPORTER: Can you saydefinitely when the electionwill be?


REPORTER: Can you saydefinitely when the electionwill be?

At the moment, we'recityinging with the date thatwe have.

Of course, theelection period, the periodthat we consider for instance, for campaign finance

purposes, is only three months prior tothat.

From our perspective, itis too soon.

We're two weeksinto a lockdown.

To make adetermination of where we willbe, even in a month's timefrom now.

So it is somethingthat we will keep underreview, but at the moment, we've kept it to 19 September.

I spoke to Simon Bridges justyesterday, just to say that wewould keep staying in touchover

whether or not there'slikely to be any movementthere.

And so, Ultimo matly, it is no -- ultimately, it'sis no-one's interest where wecan't campaign

as but equally, I don't want to make ajudgement yet that that won'tbe able to happen.

REPORTER: What factors willyou take into account whendetermining when the electionwill be held?

Is it purelyadvice from health experts?Sorry, is it purely advicefrom health experts?

Ofcourse, the alert level willmake a big difference, becausewe need people to be able togo out

and physically vote.

Sothat will be a significantdetermining factor.

I think ifwe based it sole lip on theidea of whether or not we'llbe able to have massgatherings,

actually, that maybe a fixture for some time.

SoI don't think that that alonewould be enough of a guide.

Sowe really do need to keepassessing New Zealand'sposition as we go.

REPORTER: Yesterday, we heardfrom the Police Commissionerabout a number of individualsspitting

on police officers, hospital worker and othermembers of the front-linecommunity.

What would be yourmessage to people who thinkthat this is acceptable?

Ithink it's appalling.

Andparticularly targeting peoplewho are already makingsacrifices for New Zealandersby being

on the front-lineevery day.

I think it'sappalling.

I have other words, but I probably can't use themhere.

REPORTER: For those people whogo into quarantine when theyget back, will Air NZ still bedoing

the regional flights tobring them to your hubs afterthat?

Yes, after the 14 days.

So we recognise that afterpeople have been in thatquarantine, that they willneed to get

back to theirhomes, and often that will bepotentially in the SouthIsland if they arrived inAuckland.

So there will be theability for them to use theregional airline capacity toget home.

REPORTER: How do they do that?Do they just go on thewebsite?

This is one of thereasons why, of course, thereis quite a bit to preparearound putting

every singleperson who arrives at ourborder into a hotel.

We doneed to make sure that we'remeeting all of their needswhile they're there.

Theirfood, of course, keeping inmind that they cannot go tothe grocery stores.

Theycannot go and find essentialservices.

We have to providethat for them.

We also have tomake sure that when they arelooking to connect back totheir home, we're supportingthem

to do that.

We willclassify relocation after aninternational flight as beingqualifying for essentialaccess

to domestic airlines.

REPORTER: what about theproposal to withdraw airtraffic services

from sevenregional airports?

Obviously, part of our arrangements withAir-New Zealand is to continueto maintain basic levels

ofconnectivity with our regions.

And so, of course, we'd beconcerned if we were losing afundamental part of thatnetwork.

And so I know that'ssomething that Minister PhilTwyford is aware of and islooking at.

REPORTER: What about theclaimed millions from theaviation package?

This is oneof the reasons that thepackage existed is because wevalued and know that

we needto keep the links going, regardless of the fact thatwe're in alert level 4.

Weneed to be ready to once againhave lesser restrictions.

Sothat's why Minister Twyford isworking on this issue now.

REPORTER: Can you tell usabout the number of foreigncitizens in New Zealand whohave

been repatriated?

And thenumbers still waiting to berepatriated and the plan forthem going forward?

So, westill, I would say in the.

. . The number of German flights.

We had the Netherlands workingon flights, and for a time, Ialso believe the UK.

I wouldwant to give you something abit more up to date on that, though, in terms of numbers.

But we've had a steady trackof repatriations coming out ofNew Zealand.

But they arestill significant numbers as Iunderstand, and including someforeign Nationals who willneed

to transit through NewZealand if they are to get outof the Pacific, which alsothere

are a number there.

I'llcome to the front.

REPORTER: Is the going lookingfor wage support for peopleemployed by government fundedorganisations

like a cleaneror a council, who has lostwork during this time butisn't able to get the


Sorry, yourclassification for why theycan't get the wage subsidy?Because they're casual?

REPORTER: Government funded?So you're using the example ofa council cleaner?

I wouldn'tmind getting more detail onthat, because ultimately, youdon't get it as a Governmentfunded

organisation because wecontinue to fund you in orderto operate continuouslythrough this


Othersoutside of that, generally areable to access the wagesubsidy.

So I wouldn't mindlooking at the example ofyou've given.

I've also beenasked about casual staff.

There is provision within thewage subsidy, so long as anemployer lists casual staff,

for them to be included in thewage subsidy as well.

REPORTER: With governmentdepartments seeing increasednotices and chasing people fordebt


Is that whatyou would call compassionate?What I would say about that, that was an error

and itshould never have happened.

That was an automated letterthat was dispatched.

They'reon the phone now.

They'remaking, I understand, roughly2, 000 calls to apologise topeople who received suchletters,

because as I say, itwas automated.

It should neverhave happened.

REPORTER: Do you acknowledgehow distressing that wouldhave been?

Absolutely, absolutely I do.

And that iswhy those individuals arebeing called personally, tohave that apology given


And to make sure thatpeople can have any concerns, that they can talk themthrough with someone

on thephone.

It should never havehappened.

REPORTER: What aboutGovernment departments chasingpeople for debt at the moment?Again,

I find that verysurprising.

If you give me thenames of where that'shappening, I'll look to fixit.

Keeping in mind, though, if anyone is misusing the wagesubsidy, we will go afterthat.

So there is enforcementaction happening at the momentand there might be areas whereit

is, for instance, theGovernment enforcing paymentsto others.

So, of course, people through the courts, whohave to pay reparations tovictims, or people

who need topay child support subsidy, that's not money to us.

It'smoney much-needed for otherpeople.

And so there might besome quirks in there.

REPORTER: Golf courses want anexemption under essentialservices for green maintenancebecause

they're worried thatthe results will becatastrophic.

Why is it takingso long to get that looked at?And will you grant anexception?

The reason thatthat has taken time is thateverything has to be reviewedthrough a public health


I have had this raised withme.

Officials are working onthat issue as we speak.

REPORTER: Just on that fromSir Bob Charles, who says byfour weeks, courses will closeand

never reopen.

We have asmall amount of maintenance, please look into this.

So, what we have done in someareas, where it is health andsafety in the sense thatcouncils

have said that theywant to keep maintenancebecause rodents become anissue.

And in those areaswhere it is just a singleperson and no contact withothers, there has been

theability for that to bemanaged, because ourprinciples have always been -maintain health

and safety atthe same time.

When it comesto those recreational areas, public health lens needs to beour starting

point and that iswhat can being worked throughnow.

REPORTER: On the lockdown, there seems to be a little bitof confusion potentiallyamongst

the public that at theend of the lockdown, it's lifeas usual, again.

Can youexplain why that's the case?When we're in the position tomove from alert level 4,

itwill only be from there toalert level 3.

So life willstill be different.

We do wantto ease our restrictions.

Butif we move too quickly, andloosen up too quickly, we willbe back to the beginning.

No-one wants to be in alertlevel 4 longer than we needto, so that's why we need tobe

so careful as we exit it.

REPORTER: What are thecriteria for schools reopeningunder level 3.

What can reopenand what can't?

Again, that'swhere I would question - we'veobviously been preparing fordistance learning.

Not becausewe think that we'll be inalert level 4 for a long time, but because there

may bedifferent situations fordifferent learning levels.

SoECE, primary and secondary.

The Minister of Education isagain going over theguidelines that were setbefore alert level

4 to makesure that we've got them allnice and tight.

And when we'retalking next week about someof the specifics of level 3, we'll be including

educationin that.

REPORTER: In your openingremarks, you mentioned that ifwe start to relax, in twoweeks, we

could be back at thestarting block.

Have you beengiven that it could only takethat short amount of time?

Ifwe left now, yes.

REPORTER: Can you provide moreinformation about theguidelines being released nextweek?

How much detail can theyexpect?

Can they expect to betold who is essential?

Whatwe'll do is work from theprinciples for alert level 4.

And that is keepinginteraction with one anotherto a bare minimum except foressential services

so we willuse some examples.

One of theissues is that we have tens ofthousands of businesses outthere, and so often, therewill

be questions that willcome up even when we provideprinciples, and so we want togive enough

time to workthrough some of those.

Sothat's why we'll be releasingsome of that detail next week.

Just going back on the noticeperiod to ramp up.

They willsay that that is not enough.

To be clear, that'sessentially what we're doingnow is saying everyone, prepare for alert

level 3.

We'll be providing moreguidance on what that willlook like next week.

And then, two days out from when we aredue to come to the end of thefour weeks, we'll

be lettingpeople know whether we aremoving out or not.

So that'sthe timeline we're working to.

But if you wish to preparenow, and I would encourage youto do so, the three basicstarting


Make surethat you look at whether ornot you can work with socialdistancing?

Can we contacttrace all of the customers, all your employees that youwork with?

And do you, or willyou need PPE?

Those are somepeople sings that we askpeople to already prepare for.

REPORTER: As Minister Parkerreceived legal adviceregarding the Ruby Princess?Snoop I've

seen some and thereis some there, given that itis particularly a Customsissue.

So only preliminary.

REPORTER: What have you got sofar?

Notion that I can sharewith you at this stage becauseit is preliminary.

REPORTER: Singapore's app hasbeen criticised for needing areally high level of uptake inorder

for it to be effective.

If you have half of thepopulation using it and onlytracking 25% of contacts.

Howdo you get that uptake in NewZealand?

Ultimately, thedecision is that we eitherhave something that everyoneis forced to use, or

we havesomething that peoplevoluntarily use, but we try toget as much uptake aspossible.

There are hugeissues with forcing people touse apps that track theirmovements, as you can


So we are opting for apps thatpeople choose to par take in, but I think if peopleunderstand

that it is one ofthe things that will help usstay out of stringent measureslike alert

level 4, then theymight be encouraged to take itup.

Ashley, did you want tocomment on that as well.

Justto add that again, the use ofany technology, including theapps, would always be anadjunct

to the core contacttracing functionality.

Theother thing that we can do, ofcourse, is enhance our abilityto get contact details

forpeople by using the range ofsocial media platforms to findpeople and to communicate


And that's somethingthat we're adding into theprocess as well.

I think it'sreally important, when youthink about contact tracingis, think about before

youwent into lockdown.

In the sixdays prior, could you nameevery single person that youwere within two metres


Andthat is the challenge ofcontact tracing.

It's hugelydifficult.

At alert level 4, it's much, much easier becauseyou list, if you're followingthe rules, your bubble.

And sothat's why it's so importantthat we have those publichealth trained, experiencedpeople,

who can undertakethose really intensiveinterviews, and then we usefinding services, Customs,

police, and social media.

Because in some cases, theymight just have a name.

Nothing else.

So that's whyeven a basic app that haspeople enrol, register, updateinformation, because

our NHIplatform doesn't evensometimes have your most up todate phone number - all ofthat

will make a difference.

REPORTER: Can and willParliament sit under alertlevel 3?

Again, these are someof the issue that is we'reworking into that finer detailaround,

because of course, wehave already set uparrangements for Parliamentthat allow people to be at adistance

from each otherwithin the debating chamber.

And so, you may see variationson a full Parliament, butthose are things that we needto work through

with thespeaker.

REPORTER: As you've seenby what we've done, we wantedto maintain scrutiny

whilemaintaining extraordinarypowers.

We've done that todate through a selectcommittee.

But ultimately, everyone's ambition should beto bring back the usual toolsof our democracy

when we cansafely.

REPORTER: Just with the PSA, the Government has been foundto be negligent for lettingPSA

to come here but not forfruit growers.

One of thethings that I'll be cautiousabout here, even though youasked about the law generally.

This is a case going since2010, and my understanding isthat it could still be subjectto appeal.

So still needs torun its course and then we'llbe in a position to answersome of those questions.

REPORTER: Does it sit with youmorally that the Crown can'tdirectly there.

Again, asking me for a moralquestion when an appeal couldbe coming, I need to let itrun

its course.

REPORTER: Where will thehotels be?

They're acrossAuckland, as you would expect.

That is where we predominantlyhave the international flightscoming in.

REPORTER: What aboutChristchurch and Auckland?

Sowe do have campervansavailable.

We've been able toaccommodate peoplesuccessfully within hotels.

But we have had theavailability of campervansshould we need them.

Keepingin mind that at the moment, wehave 40 yesterday, but onaverage in the past littlewhile,

we've had up to 190.

You asked a question on why wedidn't move earlier.

We thisthings like Qatar bringing onextra flights.

There is talkof some flights resuming, sosome transit routes opening upfor Kiwis.

We have toconstantly prepare that thenumbers could tick up andthat's why we keep the extracapacity.

REPORTER: If there are peoplewho have tested positive orwho are COVID positive, thatthey're

not going to pass thaton in quarantine.

Whatassurances can you give peoplethat they're not going to getCOVID-19 in there?

I'll handover to Dr Bloomfield.

In thatquarantine situation wheresomeone is symptomatic, andhas been tested, or they haveknown

infection, because theywere tested when they arrived, then that's a very strictisolation,

and any staff orpeople interacting with themare using PPE.

The person isnot allowed outside theirroom.

Where it is that managedself-isolation, and what weare looking at is the extentof testing

we might use forpeople coming in.

And-ortesting before people arereleased.

That's one of thethings we're looking at.

Butagain, we have experience nowin being able to do this withthe evacuees we brought out

ofWuhan, and simple, religiouslyapplied hand washing, use ofmasks if necessary, will stopinfections

being spread.

REPORTER: You said previouslythat four of the cases there, were tour guides, interpretersor


Were those in theHawke's Bay or in other areas?They were all Hawke's Bay.

Sothey were local in Hawke'sBay, and that's why we've seenthe local spread, is only inthe

Hawke's Bay.

REPORTER: Just on the clustersthat are there, with theMinistry of Health website.

The names of the clusters onthe website are quite highlevel, in the pressconference, you

described themat Marist School, etc.

Why isthere a dissimilarity there?Why do you give more detailhere and not on the website?

Ithink up until the last day ortwo, there was the detail onthe website.

And for somereason, it was downgraded ormade more general.

So we'rereinstating it back to what itwas.

We want to incentiviseyou being here for theseprecious moments!

Already, we'll just take the lastcouple.

Thank you.

Oh, no, youdidn't have one!


REPORTER: will it need tobe in place and voluntarybefore we can look

at it?

No, no, not necessarily.

In fact, obviously as I've said, thisis something that's in train.

It will enhance what we'redoing.

But given theimperfections and everycountry's app system that I'velooked at, it will never

be apanacea.

It will never solveeverything.

That's why, as DrBloomfield said today, we areauditing our contact tracingto make sure

that we are doingeverything that we can now tomake sure that that is goldstandard, and

an app will onlysupplement that.

REPORTER: They talked aboutthe need to be able to trace7, 000 people and contacts, for1,

000 cases.

Will we need tobe able to do that before wecan come out of alert levelfour?

We would if we had 1, 000cases.

But as you can see, thecase numbers are dropping.

That's why we went into alertlevel 4.

We have very goodcapacity there.

In fact, we'renot using all of the capacitybecause the case numbers aredropping and of course,

ourintention is to get the casenumbers down as low aspossible - if not to zero, andthen

be able to stamp out anycases and any outbreaks thatdo, perhaps, pop up.

REPORTER: With the clusters, are the clusters, DrBloomfield.

Can you give usmore example for example aboutthe Auckland workplace, thathas around 25?

We will providedetail about, for example, aschool or an event where it ispertinent.

But in someinstances, we will with holdthe name and the location ofthe workplace if we

think thatit is going to create privacyissues.

That's the onlyreason.

REPORTER: It's a significantcluster and a large numberpeople there.

And peopleaffected get a phone call fromthe Ministry of Health.

So ifthey're affected, they know.

REPORTER: Talking about stocksof PPE, why are hospital staffsaying that they still don'thave


I'm very happywith our stocks of PPE, andevery DHB, includinghospitals, has plenty of PPE.

If there are individual staffmembers where they feel thatthere is an issue, then theyare.

. . They are and do raiseit through their unions, andthat's why we've workedclosely

with unions to ensurethat the staff were confident, not just in the supply, butalso in the availability


REPORTER: Is the pandemicstock in good condition?

Thatit can be sent out, or hassome of it deteriorated?

Someof it has deteriorated andthere was a story that 10% ofthe masks, the N95 masks

atHutt Hospital, the elasticswere found to be deterioratedand they're being replaced.

But it doesn't mean that therewasn't PPE available becausethere was only 10% of thestock there.

OK, last one.

REPORTER: Is that morewidespread?

There had beensome other hospitals that we'dfound earlier, but of course, then we have plenty.

We haveanother 18 million in there.

Last question.

REPORTER: How much is theGovernment expecting managedquarantine to cost?

And are wepaying full rate for thoserooms?

As you would expect, weare seeking.

. . As you wouldexpect, we would ensure thatwe maximise tax savings forpeople at a time when

demandfor hotels is low.

So whilewe're under way withnegotiating some of thecontracts, I'm not going togive a per

room rate, but Ican assure you, we'll beseeking best value for moneyfor New Zealanders.

REPORTER: Is that from theGovernment?

It's purelyspeculative because there'ssuch huge fluctuations in thenumbers coming in

every day, but I'm sure that you can makesome estimates based on thenumbers that we have,

keepingin mind also the cost ofprovision of food.

Very last.

REPORTER: PM, I have aquestion from the southernnews room.

The block cluster -was it linked to internationaltravel?

And the cases wereconfirmed prior to lockdown, but the Ministry of Health wasreally slow

to report thiscluster.

What was the hold-upon that?

So two questionsthere.

In response to thefirst one, yes, the index casewas associated withinternational travel.

And thensecondly, it takes some timebefore the case numbers get upto a level where you

knowyou've got a cluster, and thenonce they do reach that level, then, of course, we startinvestigating

it as a cluster, and then reporting on it as acluster.

So on that oneactually, there was quiterapid action, and also peoplecame from around the

country, so actually associated withthat event, there was a smallcluster in Wellington.

There'sa larger cluster of about 25.

So they're all associated withthat original event.

And if Ican just take a quick minute, just to give you that accuratefigure of the total

lab teststo date.

51, 165, and secondly, we now have data on thelaboratory testing by DHB, andby ethnicity,

and thatincludes both the rates andalso the positivity rate, andwe will be putting that

on ourwebsite too, this afternoon.

On that note, thank youeveryone.

Have a good weekend.

The Description of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) update – 9 April, 2020