May 04, 2020
Caution call despite falling case numbers
Despite the lack of new COVID-19 cases, the handshakes and the hongi may have to wait.
The Health Ministry’s deputy director-general for Māori health says any lowering of alert levels doesn’t mean there can be any loss of focus on public health.
John Whaanga says the ministry continues to keep a close watch on how Māori are tracking, and it is talking with the Māori pandemic response group about what data would be most useful to collect.
It's also reinforcing its health messages.
"It’s still going to be really important that we wash our hands. It’s still going to be really important that we still practice social distancing, so for some of the aspects of our tikanga which indeed changed even before the alert levels were put in place, I think some of those things are potentially going to be lasting for some months to come yet," Mr Whaanga says.
The impact of COVID-19 is still to really bite, and there needs to be strong primary healthcare available to ease some of the socioeconomic pressure.
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