New Zealand's mandatory seven-day self-isolation requirement for Covid-19 may see some relief by the end of the month, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has finally admitted.
Despite most Covid-19 rules being lifted last September, including traffic light settings, strict vaccine mandates, and mask-wearing in non-healthcare settings, the seven-day isolation period for infected individuals remained intact.
The Cabinet reviewed the requirement in April, with the notice set to expire at the end of August. Before then, a decision will be made regarding the potential relaxation of isolation requirements.
Hipkins stated that the government is considering transitioning Covid-19 to a business-as-usual approach for the health system as the current notice period draws to a close.
While acknowledging the "ongoing pressure" on New Zealand's health system during winter, Hipkins assured that the government is focused on navigating through this "critical period".
On the other hand, National Party leader Christopher Luxon urged a quicker transition, expressing that it is time to move beyond Covid-19 and trust people to manage the virus themselves.
He pointed out that other countries have already opened up their economies in a more effective manner.