Get tested, vaccinated: Southerners warned not to be complacent

The Pages Rd Covid testing centre in Christchurch today. Photo: George Heard
The Pages Rd Covid testing centre in Christchurch today. Photo: George Heard
The return of Covid-19 to the South Island has health officials in the South urging people to get tested if they have symptoms.

Two cases that were reported in Christchurch this morning follow a positive case in Blenheim which was identified at the weekend.

Southern District Health Board medical officer of health Dr Michael Butchard said it was only a matter of time before the disease travelled further south.

"It is not if, but when we get a case in the southern district, and I cannot emphasise enough the importance of people staying home and getting tested if people have any Covid-19 symptoms, however mild."

The recent South Island cases showed there was no room for complacency in the South, and if people didn't get tested Covid-19 might risk going undetected in the community.

"The sooner we pick up the first case [in the South], the sooner we can get on top of it.

"We don't want a situation where a positive person has been in the community potentially spreading the disease."

Dr Butchard also urged people to get vaccinated, and said people should go and get vaccinated today if they hadn't already.

"If you know whānau or friends who are hesitant, reach out to them today and have a friendly chat about why you got vaccinated."

Following Alert Level 2 restrictions remained important, with mask wearing, QR code scanning, and hand hygiene all key actions to help limit the spread of Covid-19.



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