Tēnā tātou katoa,
This pānui includes an update on COVID-19 business support conditions and key updates on COVID-19, including:
- Isolation period for cases will be reduced from 10 to 7 days
- Third vaccine is available
- Reporting both positive and negative test results on My Covid Record
- Testing positive for COVID-19, infographics and other assets available
Please get in touch if you have any pātai. This pānui will be available on our website under 'News'.
Inland Revenue (IR) Updates
Second COVID-19 Support Payment opens 14 March
A second COVID-19 Support Payment (CSP) will open today 14 March and a 3rd payment will open on Monday 28 March.
The period of time each CSP will cover are:
- For the 1st CSP, businesses will need to show their income is 40% lower in a 7- day period any time between 16 February 2022 and 4 April 2022, compared to a typical week between 5 January and 15 February in either 2021 or 2022.
- For the 2nd CSP, businesses will need to show their income is 40% lower in a 7- day period any time between 7 March 2022 and 4 April 2022, compared to a typical week between 5 January and 15 February in either 2021 or 2022.
- For the 3rd CSP, businesses will need to show their income is 40% lower in a 7- day period any time between 21 March 2022 and 4 April 2022, compared to a typical week between 5 January and 15 February in either 2021 or 2022.
- The option for businesses to compare their income drop to a typical week in 2021 will be available from today, 14 March.
- Self-employed people who have received the Ministry of Culture and Heritage’s one-off emergency grant for self-employed people will be able to apply for the 2nd and 3rd CSPs.
If you have concerns about eligibility, IR's website: Eligibility for the COVID-19 Support Payment (CSP) has examples at the bottom of the page.
Small Business Cashflow Scheme ‘top-up’ loan
Applications for the ‘top up’ loan to the Small Business Cashflow Scheme will open on Monday 21 March.
To make this change, the current application process will close at 5pm on 18 March and reopen at 8am on 21 March.
For more information, visit IR's Small Business Cashflow Scheme website.
How to get a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT)?
Two channels are available to request RATs:
- Via the website: requestrats.covid19.health.nz
- Via a free call at 0800 222 478 option 3
- To make a request via the website, you will need to have access to a mobile phone to validate the order. RATs can be requested on behalf of someone else.
- Requesting RATs on the RAT Requester site is an easy step-by-step process, just follow the instructions.
- If you are eligible for RATs for home testing, you will be issued an order number. You can then pick up your RAT order from a collection site listed on Healthpoint, or have someone collect their order for you.
- Only get tested if you have symptoms or are a household contact of a confirmed case. We need to ensure those who are symptomatic, or a household contact, get access to testing.
- A delivery option is currently being worked on.
The isolation period is reduced from 10 days to seven days
Isolation period for cases and household contacts update | Isolation period reduced from 10 to 7 days; third vaccine becomes available | Beehive.govt.nz
- The isolation period for COVID-19 cases and their household contacts has been reduced from 10 to seven days as at 11:59pm Friday 11 March.
- Household contacts will need to have a RAT at day 3 and day 7 – or if they become symptomatic - and if the result is positive, they are required to isolate for seven days from that point.
- If a person is isolating and still has symptoms after seven days, they are advised to stay home until 24 hours after symptoms resolve.
- Make sure you and your whānau have a plan to self-isolate or care for vulnerable whānau in case this is needed. Start to have these conversations now – before you need to have them.
The period for recovered cases has been extended
- Recovered cases will no longer need to self-isolate if they become a household contact within 90 days after having the virus. This is an increase from the current 28 days.
Novovax is available to book from today
- While the Pfizer vaccine remains the preferred COVID-19 vaccine in New Zealand, Novavax is now available for those people who would prefer or require an alternative.
- For more information: COVID-19 vaccines: Getting Novavax | Ministry of Health NZ
Vaccination and Booster Programme Update
- 95.3% of eligible people in Aotearoa have had two vaccine doses.
- The total number of people who have received boosters – including those vaccinated overseas – is 2,498,467 (72.7% of those eligible).
- People who have had COVID-19 but not yet received a vaccination are advised to wait between 4 and 12 weeks before getting their first, second or third dose, more information here: COVID-19: Vaccine boosters | Ministry of Health NZ
- It has been eight weeks since 5-11 year old vaccinations began, it is therefore time for tamariki to get their second doses.
Report test results on My COVID Record
- People are reminded to report RAT results on My Covid Record even if negative, and please make sure everyone in all those in the same household have reported their result. How to report your RAT results.
- If you receive a text notification that you are positive, please fill out the online survey in the link you receive in the text message as soon as possible. This will ensure you can receive the appropriate care and support when you need it. Please be aware that, after filling in your My Covid Record with your positive RAT result, there can be a 24-hour delay before you receive this text message.
- The self-reporting of RATs helps provide a clear picture of how the pandemic is progressing, both at a national and a regional level.
Get help using My Covid Record
If you do not have a unique email address or valid ID, or need help with My Covid Record, contact the Ministry of Health team, 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week. It will help to have your NHI number ready.
Emergency Ambulance Services face highest ever 111 call volumes
- St John and Wellington Free Ambulance are receiving higher than average call outs.
- St John and Wellington Free Ambulance are asking the public to only phone 111 for an ambulance in genuine emergencies.
- If people are feeling unwell, or need health advice, they should call their regular health provider, for example, their GP, or Healthline, or visit covid19.govt.nz and consider alternative methods of transport to medical facilities for non-urgent conditions.
- If it is an emergency, people should continue to dial 111 for an ambulance.
Posters and resources
- For resources and assets, see the COVID-19 Toolkit (COVID-19 Resource Toolkit (covid19.govt.nz). These have also been translated into 27 languages, which can be found here.
Information in other languages and alternate formats
- You can find a wide variety of COVID-19 information in 27 languages and 4 alternate formats on the Unite Against COVID-19 website. Key information includes:
Useful links from the Ministry of Health:
Omicron The Webinar for Marae, Hapu, Iwi - (click to register)
Monday 14 March, 7:15pm
- Te Rōpū Whakakaupapa Urutā: The National Māori Pandemic Group
- Wero HIA: The Hauora Immunisation Alliance
Topics to be covered
- how we can organise ourselves during this omicron outbreak
- the needs and experiences of those with Omicron
- planning essentials to support whānau māori in this outbreak
COVID-19 webinar update for social sector providers - (click to access)
Monday 14 March, 5:45pm
- Ministry of Health
- Ministry of Social Development
- Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment
Topics to be covered
- Overview from Health settings
- Referral pathways
- MSD support for providers and clients
- Critical workforce
NZ Māori Tourism