This is our main page for COVID-19 information. It is regularly updated with the most recent and important information.
Further information is in the related resources linked below.
The Ministry of Health advice is under active review - please use their website as the source of correct, up to date information at all times.
COVID-19 is a possibility in the community, physical distancing and handwashing is still the mainstay of controlling COVID-19.
We have a duty of care to our communities, in particular the most vulnerable people like the elderly and those living with co-morbidity and in deprivation.
The principles of Alert Level 2 are the same as Alert Level 3.
As a guide in Alert Level 2 we anticipate that around 50 per cent of consultations will be "in-person" and 50 per cent will be through telephone, video or other telehealth means.
An update from Dr Jo Scott-Jones, Pinnacle MHN medical director
The community response levels that we are all now too familiar with are designed to inform the public and businesses about how to behave to reduce transmission of the virus. These response levels have an impact on the way we do business, but they are NOT designed to respond or direct the way specific HEALTH SERVICES work. You will recall that as the community response level dropped from Alert Level 4 to Level 3 there was no significant change in the advice for health service delivery.
This can cause confusion for our general practice teams. In all alert levels general practice is an essential service and practices will be open. However, appointments will be conducted online or by phone where possible. Patients can see a doctor or nurse face-to-face if required.
During the lockdown we know there was a significant drop in core activity such as immunisation and cancer screening that is likely to have caused additional morbidity, and mortality. If and when the community response Alert Levels change we need to learn from the lesson of the past few months and ensure that we continue to deliver the most important services as safely as possible.
If the prevalence of the disease increases in your community then you may not be able to differentiate between the "amber" and the "red" patients - the amber stream may need to be closed down.
If services get overwhelmed you may need to reduce access to core services - If this happens please let us know and we will support you to find help for your patients if we can.
I currently am working with the Ministry of Health and the College on the community health response framework and will keep you up to date with all developments.
The Ministry of Health has confirmed there is no centralised advice or support for travellers, but there are some generic guidelines. Different airlines, countries, businesses, universities and schools overseas will have different requirements. Private COVID-19 testing is available in all districts, contact your lab for guidance on availability and processes.
Our local leads are available for questions, concerns and advice. Please also contact one of the team if you have any issues with PPE stock - all our leads are working closely with the DHB in their region.
Jo Scott-Jones, Medical Director
027 475 0488