COVID-19 media update, 15 July

News article

15 July 2020

The Ministry of Health provided an update on the COVID-19 response at 1.00 pm today.

View the video below.

Speakers: 

  • Minister of Health, Chris Hipkins
  • Director-General of Health, Dr Ashley Bloomfield

There are two new cases of COVID-19 to report in managed isolation facilities in New Zealand today.

The speakers answered questions from the media about the following topics.

  • NZ COVID Tracer app functionality and usage.
  • Steps being taken to encourage greater uptake of COVID Tracer posters and app.
  • Confidence in contact tracing capability and ability to contact trace if there were to be new COVID-19 cases in the community.
  • Testing capacity.
  • Individual responsibility to use the COVID Tracer app and how people should normalise its use.
  • Improvement of national contact tracing capability.
  • Upcoming trials or tests of contact tracing to test under various scenarios.
  • Updated testing guidance for clinicians and reasons for this change.
  • Expectations around testing numbers and ongoing reviews to ensure enough testing is done.
  • Whether testing numbers are expected to grow following update of guidance. 
  • Possibility of testing people before they board planes back to New Zealand and why this isn’t a focus.
  • Form of briefing to the incoming Minister and confirming briefing papers will be released.
  • The continued importance of clinical judgement in determining who to test.
  • The focus of testing. 
  • What the funding of GPs for testing covers.