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Today’s COVID-19 cases drop to 29 as Ardern announces post-lockdown plan

Today’s COVID-19 cases drop to 29 as Ardern announces post-lockdown plan

For the fourth day in a row, New Zealand has recorded another significant drop in COVID-19 cases.

Today’s COVID-19 cases drop to 29 as Ardern announces post-lockdown plan

29 new cases have been recorded in the past 24hrs. This marks the lowest amount of daily cases since the lockdown began.

This brings the total to 1,239.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern praised Kiwis for the “huge” response to the lockdown.

“In the face of the greatest threat to human health that we have faced in over a century, Kiwis have quietly and collectively implemented a nationwide wall of defence,” she said.

“You are breaking the chain of transmission and you did it for each other,” she said.

The Prime Minister announced that new modelling shows the success of the lockdown so far. “We are on track to reach the most optimistic scenario,” she said.

While the drop in cases is positive, Ardern said New Zealand won’t be moving out of level 4 early.

She revealed key information on timelines. On April 20th, two days before the lockdown is meant to end, cabinet will make a decision about whether the country will move out of level 4.

Ardern also announced the next stage of initiatives in the COVID-19 response. The border, she said, will be tightly managed. “Our borders are our biggest risk…one person slipping through the cracks can lead to an explosion of cases.”

Now, every person arriving into New Zealand will be required to undergo quarantine for at least 14 days.

The next aspect is scaled up and faster contact tracing. The government is looking at utilising a Singaporean app to assist in contact tracing, which would allow of automatic notifications for close contacts if someone is tested positive.

Life after alert level 4, says Ardern won’t return to business as usual. After level 4, the country will move to level 3, she explains. “Life will still be different. We do want to ease our restrictions but if we move too quickly…we will be back to the beginning.”

The government will announce more details on level 3 guidance next week.

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