Happy Level 3 day!
Happy Level 3 day!
Welcome to a bright new day! We are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel - and it's not the train heading towards you. Well done New Zealanders! As a nation - we have been science and data driven, with good leadership from the government and we have all behaved in a kind and responsible manner. Because of the efforts of almost all New Zealanders (I always account for 5% idiots and 15% difficult people) - we are rapidly heading towards a "post-COVID" status. Along with that - I've had my first take out meal in nearly 5 weeks. Sorry about the carbohydrate rich content - but it is vegetarian Indian. I've regarded this as my cheat meal. Pants are still comfy - so haven't gotten too fat over the lock down. Please send over any pictures of your first Level 3 takeaways to me. I love to see these things! :)
Clinic Opening Hours during Level 3.
As Level 3 and Level 4 are essentially the same in terms of physical distancing requirements - we have to function in the same way.
We will stay open at the reduced hours of 9am to 4pm.
When we go into Level 2 - we will go back to 8am to 5:30pm hours and resume routine check ups and screening.
Flu jab supplies.
Supplies are fine. Don't know what all the media attention about short supplies is about. We've been great. So let us know if you wish to have your flu jabs.
Remember - flu jabs won't protect you against COVID19. However - it's important to protect yourself against the flu so that you don't get sick this winter. It also means that if you do get COVID19 - you're less likely to get flu on top of that. It is recommended for everyone to have the flu jabs this year.
When are we likely to move to level 2?
Probably in 2 weeks, provided that: 1. Daily new case numbers are between 0-9. 2. All new cases can be linked to existing cases. i.e. there is no unlinked community spread. 3. All new arrivals can be quarantined safely and that the entire arrival chain can be tested regularly - i.e. air flight crew, airport crew, transportation and hotel staff. This will be great, because it will mean that we will have some semblance of normal economic behaviour - with some modification. Physical distancing will still need to be maintained. There is a possibility of going back to Level 3 or 4 if new cases start to pop up that are unlinked to anything. Good models for lock downs and reopening stages can be seen in Hokkaido, Japan. They initially opened up after a lock down, but then case numbers started to go up rapidly. They noticed that COVID19 was coming from surrounding areas moving into Hokkaido and causing community spread. They went back into lock down. New Zealand should hopefully be able to avoid this with good, strict border control.
There has been some argument that our freedoms have been curtailed. This is absolutely necessary because what happens to you can hurt other people. For example - if you get sick, you can make other people sick. If you have a treatable cancer but decline treatment - then you can't really hurt other people. In a pandemic, the good of the collective outweighs the good of the individual. I think that if personal freedoms are curtailed on a temporary basis and restored later - that should be completely acceptable.
How is New Zealand doing COVID19 wise?
Still pretty good. As the PM has said - the tail of COVID19 is long. We can see that we've been hovering around single digits for about 10 days now. New Zealand counts confirmed and probable cases. Australia only includes confirmed cases - and they do not have widespread testing for everyone like we do. They still have criteria for testing.
This puts New Zealand in a great position because we have the testing capacity to check everyone that wants a test. We can also randomly test asymptomatic people. Having lower numbers of new cases also means that we can contact trace everyone. Let's put this into context. In USA - with 20,000 new cases a day - there is no way they can contact trace that many people unless they have a work force of maybe 300,000 people. When we get 3-8 cases a day, we can quite easily manage with the 100+ contact tracers we currently have.
I think that New Zealand can get to 0 new cases a day, except those arriving from overseas. If Taiwan - a small island nation with a dense population can do it, so can we.
So hang in there everyone, Level 2 is coming soon and that will mean we will be back to 80% normal. I'm looking forward to a road trip. And maybe kayaking. See you guys outside, but remember to maintain physical distancing. Then have your take outs after.
Please share this with your friends if you find this helpful, and you think it might be helpful to them. My charts are updated everyday on: https://www.baysidemedical.co.nz/faq If people are interested in finding out about our medical practice or joining us, please look us up on: https://www.baysidemedical.co.nz/