90 Percent COVID-19 Vaccination Needed Before Traffic Light Framework

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the new COVID-19 Protection Framework that aims to provide a pathway out of lock down and the ability for businesses and events to re-open to vaccinated New Zealanders.

Prime Minister Ardern says, “our current alert level framework and elimination strategy kept us safe and the economy functioning while we vaccinated but now as more Kiwis are protected by the vaccine we need a new plan that moves away from lock downs as our primary defence against the virus.

The simplified framework has three levels: Green, Orange and Red. Vaccine certificates will provide greater freedoms at each level, and there will be extra public health precautions built in at higher levels to minimise the impact of COVID-19 and suppress the spread of the virus,” adds Ms Ardern.

Testing, contact tracing and isolation will continue as key tools to minimise any spread of the virus. And localised lockdowns will still be kept as an option if there is a rapid growth in cases in areas with high levels of unvaccinated people.

Auckland will move into the new framework when 90 percent of eligible population in each of the three DHBs are fully vaccinated and the 90 percent fully vaccinated target set across each DHB region before the rest of the country moves into the new system.

The Government will also provide:

  • Up to $940 million per fortnight in Business Boost package
  • $120 million to accelerate Māori vaccination rates

Cabinet will review vaccination progress on November 29.

The Prime Minister had this message for those who have yet to be vaccinated. “If you are still unvaccinated, not only will you be more at risk of catching COVID-19, but many of the freedoms others enjoy will be out of reach. No-one wants that to happen but we need to minimise the threat of the virus, which is now mainly spreading amongst unvaccinated people.”

There are 129 new community cases today. 120 are in Auckland and nine are in the Waikato.

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