In yesterday’s announcement, the Prime Minister set out what will happen once the Omicron variant makes its way from the border into the community.
All of New Zealand is now at Orange. However, today the Prime Minister announced that New Zealand will move to Red when there’s confirmed community spread of Omicron, beyond a border-related case, within 24 to 48 hours. The response and restrictions will be the same nationwide and, from yesterday’s comments, it appears unlikely that the ongoing response will have any regional variations or borders.
A reminder that the Red traffic light restrictions are not a lockdown. Red allows businesses to remain open and domestic travel to continue, but includes mask-wearing, gathering restrictions and the use of vaccine passes.
Preparation is critical. For businesses, this means considering how you will use PPE gear, enable social distancing, roster staff, manage service expectations and encourage your team to get boosters.
- Is your business ready for Omicron?
- Financial support to pay self-isolating staff
- NZBN: Keep your suppliers and buyers updated
Testing will be free
The Government confirmed that testing will remain free, and help ensure those that are symptomatic, vulnerable, essential workers and close contacts can access local testing. Rapid Antigen Tests will be made available more widely, although we expect more details on this next week.