Here are some of the ways New Zealand has responded to Covid-19 in the past few weeks.
- Early on, we banned travellers from China and Iran, but said travellers from South Korea and Italy could self-isolate. At the time, the reason given was that self-isolation basically stopped people from coming anyway. Self-isolation was later proved to be a tool with limited usefulness.
- We cancelled Pasifika but let WOMAD go ahead.
- We asked all travellers to self isolate. Six days later we stopped overseas citizens from landing, as too many were failing to self-isolate.
- We banned mass gatherings of over 500. We then stopped indoor gatherings of more than 100.
- We want to be able to contact trace people who attend bars, restaurants and cafes, so we have asked these businesses to set up registers, and also expect everyone to be truthful here.
- We asked over 70s to stay home, but our deputy prime minister immediately ignored this advice.
- We are saying we want to keep Covid-19 Out, and stamp it out – this implies not letting Covid-19 become part of the New Zealand landscape. We are also saying we want to flatten the curve, which seems to imply it’s already here, and the best we can do is mitigate it’s impact
Have all of these decisions and messaging been correct? 80% of my twitter feed seems to think so. I have no idea.