Covid-19 alert level system linked to NZ

Wednesday 28 April 2021 | Written by Emmanuel Samoglou | Published in Health, National

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Covid-19 alert level system linked to NZ
PM Mark Brown presenting a gift to PM Jacinda Ardern during his visit earlier this month. MFAI/21040120

Prime Minster Mark Brown says the country is tracking well to prepare for a potential travel bubble with Aotearoa as the country’s Covid-19 alert system is overhauled to align it with New Zealand’s.

The Cook Islands is pushing forward with its health system preparedness in advance of a potential travel bubble by aligning its Covid-19 alert system with New Zealand.

As a result of the changes to the system by Te Marae Ora Ministry of Health, a numbered tier system has been added to the existing colour-coded system.

Each alert level now describes the different measures required by residents, depending on whether there are community cases of Covid-19 in the Cook Islands or New Zealand.

While making the announcement yesterday afternoon, Prime Minister Mark Brown said: “I remain committed to preserving the health and safety of our people as the utmost priority.”

“The new Cook Islands Covid-19 alert level system is set to achieve a number of objectives; continued public confidence, greater cohesion across Government, alignment with the New Zealand Covid-19 alert levels system and to provide clarity to the impact of New Zealand’s settings has on the Cook Islands.”

The PM has asked the public to familiarise themselves with the new system, which he said provides additional clarity as to what actions are required by the public, government and industry at each alert level.

Brown said he is expecting a final assessment this week on the nation’s readiness for quarantine-free travel from a Government taskforce set up to oversee preparations in advance of a travel bubble.

“Tracing has been improved with the release of our contact tracing app last week. Our PCR lab is now complete and our trainer has arrived from NZ,” he told Cook Islands News.

“Things have progressed quite a bit from the beginning of the month, so we’re in good shape.”