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Ed Sheeran

Level 1 chance to review COVID response
Photo: Getty Images.

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The country is waking up to Alert Level 1, with no active COVID-19 cases and all restrictions on workplaces and public gatherings lifted.

John Whaanga, the Health Ministry’s deputy general for Māori health, says it’s a chance to evaluate what has been done over the past three months, and what needs to be done if similar events happen in future.

He will talk with iwi and Māori organisations about their experiences, and also with the network of Māori managers within the health system to see if there is anything that could have been done better.

“There are certainly some things we have learnt. If you look at the way we progressed the tangihanga guidelines, I think there’s a good discussion about if we were to face these circumstances in the future, what can we take out of what we have done over the last two months to make sure we are better prepared and more responsive in what are quite challenging things to manage,” Mr Whaanga says.

It's essential to avoid complacency, as maintaining New Zealand’s COVID-free status will require effective quarantine at the country’s borders and maintaining contact tracing and other systems so any outbreaks can be quickly identified and contained.

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