March 17, 2020
Virus precautions ramp up
A south Auckland Māori doctor expects cases of Covid-19 to jump up over the next couple of weeks.
David Jansen from the Papakura Marae Health Clinic says most people will be safe, but those at most risk are the elderly and those with other conditions, such as respiratory conditions like lung damage from smoking.
That means there is a lot of work to be done to protect the vulnerable, with most people now coming on board with precautions like washing hands and avoiding unnecessary contact with others.
He says the system is now ramping up, with a special Covid channel on the Healthline phone service and assessment centres being set up.
“If you don’t have symptoms, you don’t need an assessment. Fever, cough, aches and pains of a really bad flu, those people – get assessed. But if you don’t have those then you don’t need to be assessed. The second thing is if you have some symptoms of being unwell, then don’t go to work, don’t spread it around,” he says.
Dr Jansen says because younger people can spread the virus without appearing to be particularly sick themselves, it’s important people keep their social distance.
Meanwhile, the Government yesterday announced a $12.1 billion package to mitigate the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on New Zealanders and businesses.
It includes an initial $500 million boost for health support, $5.1 billion in wage subsidies for affected businesses in all sectors and regions, and $2.8 billion in income support package for the most vulnerable.
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