Last night New Zealand moved into Phase 2 of the Red Setting. This is because the number of Omicron cases around New Zealand is now too high for contact tracing to be done by government workers. The key idea in Phase 2 is that you have to do your own contact tracing. Here is how it should work for vaccinated people:
Firstly, you should get your booster as soon as you can. If you don’t feel sick, you should not get tested. If you get sick, you can arrange to get a test by searching online. If you test positive for covid, you should isolate for 10 days, and notify the people you have been in contact with recently. They will have to isolate too; for 10 days if they live in the same house, and for 7 days if they are a contact outside the house.
If your friend is an essential worker, they may not have to isolate. They may be able to continue working as long as they have no symptoms, get a RAT test every day and practice social distancing.
Everyone will need to stock up on food and medicine to prepare for if they get sick. Some popular food for the cupboards is tinned soup, tinned creamed rice, tinned fruit, frozen veges, frozen fish, and of course, instant noodles. Medicines might include saline nasal spray, paracetamol, and cough medicine. If you can afford to buy an oximeter for about $80, that would be good too.
In Phase 2 of the Red Setting, government workers will have more time to focus on protecting vulnerable people such as the elderly instead of trying to contact trace thousands of people.
phase: stage, level
setting: A setting is like a context, or a group of variables. For example, we have a range of settings on our computer that we can change so that using the computer is more convenient. When we talk about settings in the Covid Protection Framework, they are sets of rules for different situations.
Booster (shot): a third vaccination to improve immunity to a disease after vaccination
get tested: undergo a medical PCP test to see if you have Covid 19
notify: tell, inform
in contact with: to meet personally, face to face
a contact: someone you have met with face to face
RAT test: a rapid antigen test. This is very fast, DIY Covid 19 test
stock up on: This is a phrasal verb meaning to store; collect and keep.
vulnerable: in danger, easily hurt