Political Information
Auckland, NZ, To Remain In Lockdown Even As Fully Vaccinated Hit 70%
By Tess McClure with comments by Ron
Oct 18, 2021 - 8:06:37 PM

Tess McClure
The Guardian
Mon, 18 Oct 2021 18:03 UTC

new zealand masks© Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

Auckland, the city at the centre of New Zealand's Covid outbreak, will remain in level 3 lockdown for another two weeks, despite rising vaccination levels. The decision from prime minister Jacinda Ardern comes as experts remain concerned that an early move out of lockdown could be disastrous, and risk overwhelming the health system.

Auckland is closing in on 90% of its population having had one shot; 89% of the region's population has now had at least one dose, and 70% are fully vaccinated.

Across the country, 82% of the eligible population (those aged 12 and over) have had at least one vaccination, or 70% of the total population; 64% of the eligible population, or 55% of the full population are fully inoculated with both shots.

Ardern has not yet announced a specific point in vaccination levels where restrictions will be loosened, but has previously ruled out dropping public health measures before the country reaches 90%. She said on Monday afternoon that restrictions would be needed for a while longer to avoid a spike in cases.

Comment: Even at 100% they would find a reason for restrictions.

[Ron: As receiving these anti-COVID injections doesn't prevent the recipient from getting a respiratoty illness or prevent anyone else getting a respiratory illness, having 100% of the population getting the "jab" will make no difference to the incidence of respiratory illnesses. So of course having 100% of the population 'injected' will make no difference to the continuing imposition of lockdowns, medical passports or anything else. Why would it? Not only will people continue to suffer from respiratory illnesses as previously was thee case, BUT in fact the injections, lockdowns, mask wearing, social distancing, hysterical hand washing etc, are increasing mass psychosis and susceptibility to physical and mental illnesses. It's a vicious spiral designed to increases sickness and death not prevent it.].

"If we get this right, if we keep case numbers low while we vaccinate people then it makes it easier for us to keep control of Covid, while we ease restrictions in the future, and that is everyone's goal," she said. "The question for cabinet today has been how do we avoid a spike in case numbers, and hospitalisations, and protect vulnerable communities as much as possible in the coming weeks, while we keep lifting vaccination numbers."

[Ron: As "case numbers" are fraudulently created by the CPR test, this statement is fraudulent and meaningless. What is required is an accurate diagnoses of the illnesses resulting in hospitalisations and deaths. SUCH INFORMATION IS NEVER PROVIDED. At the very least, the medical authorities creating this COVID-19 mass psychosis should be required to provide detailed statistics of the numbers of hospital patients and their symptoms and the number of deaths and the causes of deaths, verified by autopsies where appropriate.].

New Zealand announced 60 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday, with the total number of cases in the outbreak hitting 2,005.

[Ron: WHAT does this statement actually mean? What were the symptoms of those counted as "new cases"?  Were any of them asymptomatic? IF any of them were asymptomatic, WHY were they "TESTED" and HOW were they "TESTED"? If any "new cases" were asymptomatic WHY are they designated as a COVID-19 case?  WHY are these "cases" referred to as "outbreaks"? Does it imply that the anti-COVID "jabs" are ineffective? IF they are ineffective, WHY are they being forced on the population?].
Twenty-four of Monday's 60 cases have not yet been linked to existing infections, and 140 cases are unlinked from the past 14 days, suggesting there could be wider spread in the community.

Ardern said that the government would roll out a new "traffic light" framework for pandemic management, which will include a pathway out of lockdown, on Friday. It will include a high vaccination target. [Ron: WHY? The "jabs" are NOT vaccines and don't prevent illness.] She also ruled out a short term level 4 "circuit breaker" lockdown to interrupt spread - saying that noncompliance meant it was less likely to be effective.

[Ron: "traffic light", "pathwy", "circuit breaker" WTF is Ardern talking about?! Is COVID-19 a traffic problem or an electrical transmission problem or WHAT?].

Pandemic modeller for research centre Te Punaha Matatini Shaun Hendy told Stuff on Monday that "relaxation at the moment would be very dangerous". While first doses hitting 90% was an important milestone, he said attention should be on the double-dosed figure. [Ron:  WHY? BOOSTER shots are now required aren't they?]. Hendy has been calling for government to consider a "circuit breaker" temporary return to level 4 to interrupt virus transmission as vaccination rates rise. [Ron: WHY?].

He said on Monday that while that would not take New Zealand back to Covid zero, it could ensure cases did not outpace contact tracing and hospital capacity. [Ron: WHAT, specifically, is the current hospital utilisation rate?]. "The goal of a circuit breaker would be to contain spread so we can relax with case numbers that are manageable by targeted public health measures. It is not another attempt at elimination, but to keep spread in check while vaccination coverage climbs," Hendy said.

Prominent Māori groups have strongly opposed the prospect of loosened restrictions, and said it would lead to more deaths and illness in indigenous communities. The National Iwi Chairs Forum released a statement on Monday strongly rejecting a new "traffic light" system that the government has been considering to replace its existing alert levels.

"Māori and Pacific vaccination rates have to increase to the same level as other New Zealanders otherwise the infection and mortality rate will disproportionally affect our vulnerable communities," said Lisa Tumahai, chair of the Pandemic Response Group. "Our focus is now giving priority to keeping our communities safe" [Ron: From WHAT?].

Mike Smith, a Māori leader from Ngā Puhi and Ngāti Kuri, said "a strong joint statement was presented to the Crown last night to make it absolutely clear that we reject the Traffic Light Framework".

"The vaccination strategy failed Māori and Pacific communities," Smith said. "It didn't recognise the different demographics in our respective communities, Pakeha have a high number amongst its elderly, for us the highest proportion of our population is our youth so when the Governments Tier approach targeted the elderly, it did not reach into our communities."

Public health professor and epidemiologist Michael Baker said vaccination was not yet high enough to limit an outbreak size if restrictions were loosened up. "We've got only a small benefit coming from rising vaccine coverage, also the move into summer - I don't think that will be enough to balance the effects of much more exponential rise," he said. "With a [case number] doubling time of two weeks, where will that put us in that pre-Christmas period? Will we be in danger of overwhelming the health system?"

[Ron: WHAT exactly are the figures for the hospitals and 'health system"? WHY are these statistics never provided?].

Baker said the introduction of two new frameworks - the "steps" system introduced earlier this month in Auckland, and then the prospect of the traffic light system was "concerning".

Too many frameworks were confusing to the public, and the two floated didn't allow for the level of nuance needed for this stage of pandemic management, he said. "I find it really frustrating and unnecessary to move away from the alert level system - [which] has now got a lot of science behind it and modelling," he said.

"The biggest problem for me is just like the step system, the traffic light system assumes we will never need a strong lockdown ever again," Baker said. "I think, given the pandemic is full of surprises - we could get new variants of concern - you would not want to have a go forward with [a] structure that didn't allow for the possibility of needing strong responses in the future."

Comment: Nowhere mentioned: early treatment. And it never will be. Because despite the cult of safety-ism, it's not really about health.

[Ron: Bring on the Nuremberg Code legal prosecutions.].

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