Ardern also said that it would remove temporarily the exemption of compassion under which the couple were released from quarantine early.
Health officials are 320 people that are considered “close contacts” of women and they will be invited to be tested. Close contacts could include passengers on their flight to New Zealand and other travelers in quarantine at their Auckland hotel, and the staff of the hotel and the flight crew. The women were now isolated with a parent, officials said.Ardern said that the new cases had not changed the free status of Covid in New Zealand. “Our definition has always been assumed that there would be cases at the border,” she said.
The government is always looking for answers to why two women were not tested before being allowed to leave an Auckland hotel after their arrival in the United Kingdom on 7 June. They had received an exemption of compassion for the period of isolation required of 14 days for returning travelers to visit a relative dying to 650 km of Wellington. The policy of exemption for compassion has been suspended.
It was “absolutely insane” that women may not have been tested, said Ardern.
Earlier, Todd Muller, the leader of the opposition in the country, has termed this failure of the ” awkward and totally inappropriate “. “I’m as angry as I think most new Zealanders are this morning,” said the leader of the national party of the centre-right in an interview with Radio New Zealand. “We have systems in place that we plan to follow and they were simply not. ”
Muller said that David Clark, the minister of Health, should be sacked.
Only new Zealanders, their families and essential workers are being allowed to enter the country, which has no further national limitation in place due to the success of the nation to stop the spread of Covid-19. Newcomers should remain in isolation monitored for a period of 14 days, during which they should be tested twice for the virus.
The government had previously faced complaints that it was foolish to deny people the opportunity to visit with parents of dying.
Wednesday, Ardern said that the dispensations would be interrupted until a process of “disciplined and rigorous” to be in place to manage them, even if this decision would be “shocking” for some new Zealanders.
“I can’t allow the gains we have all made to be wasted by processes that are not respected,” she said. Ardern said the government had been subjected to pressure from many quarters, “including the courts” to make rules for quarantine. “This can be a difficult decision and an unpopular take, but it is good for the country,” she said.
The two new cases occurred a week after the country celebrated its lack of coronavirus when the last person remaining is re-established, and the government has lifted all restrictions on the daily life, leaving only to strict controls at the borders.
Women have made the journey of eight hours in a private vehicle on June 13, before that a women will develop symptoms of Covid-19, and that the two are diagnosed.
The new zealand government has praised the international community for a quick lock and hard and seemed to have cancelled the virus, with less than 1,500 confirmed cases and 22 deaths since its arrival on the coasts of new zealand. But the scientists said that the new diagnostics were showing with what ease a “second wave” of infection could be spread.
“These two new cases illustrate very clearly the rapidity with which the rules and the guidelines may disappear when they collide with real life,” said Amanada Kvalsvig, public health specialist at the University of Otago, Wellington. She added that such a situation could “so easily” trigger an epidemic that would back the country.
“We are now in a situation where potentially hundreds of people have traveled for several hours in a confined space with a person with infectious”, she said. “There is a huge amount of” mopping up ” to do to ensure that all chains of transmission potential have been discharged. ”
It is not known exactly what led to the error, but some remaining in isolation managed in the same hotel has declared to journalists that they had not been tested during their stay – or even starting. No one knew not if others were given exemptions of compassion for quarantine without testing.
The ministry of Health has not responded to written questions from the Guardian on the question of whether the officials were considering the recall of other persons for tests, or how many of the returning travelers had perhaps not been stamped before leaving the isolation.
Dr Ashley Bloomfield, the highest responsible for the health of the country, sought Tuesday to downplay concerns that the women would have been able to cause a transmission community, claiming that he was “not nervous” because they had ” done everything correctly “.
It was requested on Wednesday to Clark why the officials had not verified that one of the women suffered from the symptoms of Covid-19 before leaving the quarantine. “If I understand correctly, the woman had a pre-existing condition, something that meant that what she was going through was something that she expected to live,” he said.