Information on COVID-19
It is not time for us to ease up on our precautions against COVID-19. We’ve been through a lot, and we will get through this too. We’re stronger together.
Protect yourself and others with good hygiene
Cough or sneeze into your elbow or by covering your mouth and nose with tissues. Put used tissues in a bin or bag immediately.
Wash your hands with soap and water often (for at least 20 seconds) and dry thoroughly:
- before eating or handling food;
- after using the toilet;
- after coughing, sneezing, blowing your nose or wiping children’s noses; and
- after caring for sick people.
Avoid close contact with people who are unwell. Also avoid personal contact with sick people, such as kissing and sharing cups or food.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs.
Stay home if you feel unwell. Minimise close contact even in your home.
People living in communal spaces must be especially careful with distancing, cleaning and general hygiene.
Protect yourself and others when out and about
Keep your distance from other people in public:
- Two metres in public and in retail stores like supermarkets and clothes shops; and
- One metre in most other environments like workplaces, cafes, restaurants, and gyms.
Practice low-touch shopping:
- Do not handle things you are not buying;
- Be aware of how you are touching things like bank cards, money, ATMs and Eftpos machines; and
- Wash your hands as soon as you can after touching things others have touched.
Keep a track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen. This will make contact tracing fast and effective to help prevent any further spread.
You can download the NZ COVID Tracer app – available from the Apple Store or Google Play.
Wear a mask in situations where physical distancing is not possible, like on public transport or in shops.
If you are a business or provide a service: Increase your cleaning routine in between customers.
What to do if you feel unwell
Stay home if you’re unwell. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise.
Call your medical practice or Healthline (0800 358 5453) if you have COVID-19 symptoms. These include:
- a new or worsening cough;
- a sore throat;
- shortness of breath;
- a stuffy or runny nose; or
- lost sense of smell – with or without a fever.
You can be tested for COVID-19 at your general practice or a community-based testing centre (CBAC). Most GP teams are offering COVID-19 testing if you have symptoms.
You can attend a community testing centre if your medical practice does not provide testing or if you are not registered with a medical practice team. You do not need an appointment to attend a community testing centre.
Testing is free, unless you require a test for travel overseas. You must contact a medical practice if you need a test to travel overseas.
Stay informed from reliable sources about COVID-19
- Visit your local DHB website for important hospital and health hub information, such as visitor restrictions, parking and shuttle services.
- Visit your local council website for information on their essential services (such as rubbish and recycling collection or public transport) and also about upcoming rates payments.
Local public health response to novel coronavirus COVID-19
Community and Public Health stood up their EOC in just two hours in late January 2020 in response to COVID-19 with staff ceasing ‘business as usual’ work. Every effort, hour and individual has been focused on the response since then, and will likely be the last organisation to wind down. Our staff have been involved in the local COVID-19 response in many ‘behind the scenes’ ways across Canterbury, South Canterbury, West Coast and the Chatham Islands.