Te Aka Whai Ora chief medical officer Dr Rawiri Jansen says whānau need to be more alert this summer, since the third wave of the coronavirus has arrived and is at the forefront of Māori health providers' concerns.
Daily Covid-19 cases have topped 6000 for the first time in four months, though it remains unclear when this third wave will peak.
This wave is different from the first two waves that have affected the communities, and it has arrived in the summer season but Jansen says it is possible to avoid the burden of the coronavirus if families stay alert this summer.
“The concern is for families and those who are suffering from sicknesses, and for the elderly, so my words of encouragement are like this to wear masks, on the bus, on the train, at the store, at meetings, at home,” he says. "Secondly, get vaccinated again, the booster for those of you who are eligible, and thirdly, I would like to tell you to have some masks and RAT tests in your house."
Jansen says the number of cases is increasing and is not as high as previous waves," but there is concern that a large wave is coming just before the holidays, so families should be careful.”
This year the traffic light system was stopped, mask-wearing largely abandoned, and vaccine passes are no more, with some members of the public saying they don't really care because they're glad to see the relaxation of rules.
According to the Ministry of Health website,
New case average = 3,863 ↑
RAT tests uploaded average = 6,403 ↑
Cases in hospital as of midnight Sunday= 328
Cases in ICU as of midnight Sunday= 10
Deaths attributed to Covid = 4
Total deaths attributed to Covid = 2,212