Health authorities in the Cook Islands are brushing off Covid-19 concerns despite reinfection and hospitalisation rates jumping here and across the Pacific.
Latest Te Marae Ora figures show eight reinfections in
Rarotonga and two in Aitutaki while two hospitalisations have been reported on
“No change to current process and nothing to be
concerned,” Secretary of Health Bob Williams said in a written statement on
“Everyone to continue to look after themselves.
“Wear masks where required for self-protection and
keep practicing public health measures.”
The figures show
there are 10 active Covid cases on Rarotonga while 5226 have recovered.
Aitutaki has one
active case while the rest of the outer islands have no active cases or
Figures across the
Pacific show a different picture with case numbers increasing. That includes
New Zealand, Australia, Niue, French Polynesia, Fiji, New Caledonia, Tuvalu,
Solomon Islands, and Nauru.
As of December 5,
a total of 1,979,614 Covid-19 cases and 2235 deaths had been reported by the
New Zealand Ministry of Health.
Aotearoa’s Dr Emily Harvey said the most up-to-date modelling showed NZ’s
current wave of Covid cases was likely to peak this month. “We’re still looking
at the end of December, around Christmas.”
“Cases are very
uncertain, because they’re so dependent on reporting behaviour,” she said, but
modelling still suggested reported cases could peak between 10,000 to 14,000
infections to be as high as July’s deadly wave in which 554 deaths, around a
quarter of all Covid-19 attributed deaths in 2022, occurred in a single month.
The peak of
hospitalisations may occur in the last week of December through to the first
weeks of January, and most deaths would likely occur in the first weeks of
modelling did not include the impact of antivirals, she said. These could
reduce the severity of the illness and are available to those at higher risk.
If they were widely used it would be possible the deaths from this wave of
Covid-19 could be lower than July's wave.
available to people aged 65 and older, to people of Māori or Pacific ethnicity
aged 50 or older, for unvaccinated people and for those with other risk