COVID outlook

COVID-19 Outlook and Omicron response

Last updated 9/3/2022 – Press refresh or F5 to see the latest page

 

Glenfield Medical Centre will remain open throughout the COVID pandemic to look after our patients, but we will NEED YOUR HELP to ensure we can continue providing care to those who need them the most. To ensure our staff and phone lines remain accessible to critically ill patients, we would like patients seeking information to use our website as much as possible, or call the COVID-19 health advice line 0800 358 5453.

Omicron wave case number modelling

This predictive model was released in the beginning of February 2022, base on a low transmission scenario with high vaccination rate, similar to the South Australia experience. The peak of the wave was expected to be mid-March, reaching over 12,000 new cases a day. So far, the actual daily new case number has been lower than the model, but this could be due to low testing rate before the long weekends.

Some will wonder looking at the graph, why there are so many cases that are vaccinated. The expected proportions of cases are 20% unvaccinated, 5% one dose, 50% two doses and 25% boosted. However it is important to note that as of early February, of the over age 12 in New Zealand, 6% are unvaccinated, 0.8% one dose, 56% two doses and 37% boosted. Therefore comparing to those who are fully vaccinated with two doses, unvaccinated are 3.4 times more likely to catch COVID and boosted are 1.3 times less likely. However, this does not take into the account that fully vaccinated or boosted have milder symptoms and very significantly lower rates of severe COVID illness (see explanation of US December Omicron wave data in COVID vaccine section.

The Omicron response plan

This is put into 3 phases, and as of 16/2/2022 we will be in phase 2. On 25/2/2022 we will move into phase 3.

Phase 1 – There are some cases of COVID-19 in the community, but we continue to stamp it out.

  • Testing
    • anyone with symptoms must isolate and get a PCR test
  • Isolation
    • positive cases must isolate for 14 days (release by health officials)
    • contacts need to isolate for 10 days (with tests at days five and eight, although if symptomatic then must test immediately).
    • cases in managed isolation but lower risk cases and household can isolate at home 

Phase 2 – Cases have spread in the community so we need to minimise and slow transmission to protect our vulnerable communities.

  • Testing
    • anyone with symptoms must isolate and get a PCR test
    • asymptomatic critical workers who are close contact can use “test to return” RATs, if positive need confirmation PCR test
  • Isolation
    • positive cases need to isolate for 10 days, release after day 10 if asymptomatic for 72 hours
    • household contacts need to isolate for 10 days, with tests on day 3 & day 8, no reset of 10 days isolation if new positive household member
    • close contacts need to isolate for 7 days, with a test on day 5, except asymptomatic critical workers can use “test to return” RATs
    • most cases and household can isolate at home, with higher risk in managed isolation or alternative accommodation
  • Contact tracing
    • online contact tracing form available, to help with workload of contact tracing team

Phase 3 – Thousands of cases per day. Most people will be able to look after themselves at home. Health and social services will focus on those that need the most help.

  • Testing
    • anyone with symptoms must isolate and get a test, RATs will be widely used and no need for confirmation PCR test
    • household contacts with symptoms do not need to get tested, become probable case
    • asymptomatic critical workers who are close contact can use “test to return” RATs
  • Isolation
    • positive cases need to isolate for 7 days (from 12/3/22), self-release after day 7 if asymptomatic for 72 hours
    • positive cases who are critical health worker can reduce isolation to 5 days if negative RATs 2 days in a row
    • household contacts need to isolate for 7 days at the same time as the positive case (and get a test if symptomatic)
    • close contacts no longer no to isolate
    • most cases and household can isolate at home, managed isolation or alternative accommodation unlikely available
  • Contact tracing
    • positive cases supported to notify close contacts themselves
    • contact tracing team focus on people who have difficulty with techology

Our response to Omicron | Unite against COVID-19 (covid19.govt.nz)
Testing and returning to work during Omicron — business.govt.nz

    Future of COVID-19

    We are now into the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic and most are wondering when it is going to end. Although no one can be sure when that is, experts are expecting one of three scenarios. The first is that it circulates the entire population as a mild illness and everyone becomes immune. This is of course a good outcome but will take many more years to eventuate. The second is that it continues to produce variants and spreads periodically like the seasonal flu. Most people will be immune but ongoing vaccination might be required for at risk people. The third is that a sudden mutation occurs producing a new novel coronavirus, and we have another COVID-19 situation all over again. History would suggest that this happens periodically, but hopefully not too often.