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New Zealand vaccinates 2.5% of its people in a day in d...

Newsdeck

Newsdeck

New Zealand vaccinates 2.5% of its people in a day in drive to live with Covid-19

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - MARCH 26: Seagulls take over Queen Street in Auckland''s CBD after lock down has come into force with only essential workers and people exercising are allowed out on March 26, 2020 in Auckland, New Zealand. New Zealand has gone into lockdown as the government imposes tough restrictions to stop the spread of COVID-19 across the country. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Wednesday declared a State of National Emergency which came into effect at midnight along with lockdown measures. An Epidemic Notice has also been issued to help ensure the continuity of essential Government business. Under the COVID-19 Alert Level Four measures, all non-essential businesses are closed, including bars, restaurants, cinemas and playgrounds. Schools are closed and all indoor and outdoor events are banned. Essential services will remain open, including supermarkets and pharmacies. Lockdown measures are expected to remain in place for around four weeks, with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern warning there will be zero tolerance for people ignoring the restrictions, with police able to enforce them if required. New Zealand currently has 205 confirmed cases of COVID-19. (Photo by Bradley White/Getty Images)
By Reuters
18 Oct 2021 0

Oct 16 (Reuters) - New Zealand vaccinated at least 2.5% of its people on Saturday as the government tries to accelerate inoculations and live with Covid-19, preliminary health ministry data showed.

Through an array of strategies, gimmicks and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s encouragement through the day, 124,669 shots were administered by late in the day in a country of 4.9 million.

“We set a target for ourselves, Aotearoa, you’ve done it, but let’s keep going,” Ardern said, using a Maori name for New Zealand at a vaccination site, according to the Newshub news service. “Let’s go for 150. Let’s go big or go home.”

New Zealand had stayed largely virus-free for most of the pandemic until an outbreak of the Delta variant in mid-August. The government now aims to have the country live with Covid-19 through higher inoculations.

Forty-one new cases were reported on Saturday, 40 of them in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city. It has been in lockdown since mid-August to stamp out the Delta outbreak. Officials plan to end the strict restrictions when full vaccination rates reach 90%.

As of Friday, 62% of New Zealand’s eligible population had been fully vaccinated and 83% had received one shot.

Vaccination spots were set up on Saturday throughout the country, including at fast-food restaurants and parks, with some spots offering sweets afterwards, local media reported.

“I cannot wait to come and play a concert, I want to be sweaty and dancing and maybe not even wearing masks. Hopefully we can get there,” said pop singer Lorde, according to local media.

“Protect your community, get yourself a little tart, perhaps a little cream bun,” she said. “But please, please get that jab.”

Final results of the mass vaccination drive are expected to be released on Sunday. (Reporting by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne; Rditing by William Mallard)

Information pertaining to Covid-19, vaccines, how to control the spread of the virus and potential treatments is ever-changing. Under the South African Disaster Management Act Regulation 11(5)(c) it is prohibited to publish information through any medium with the intention to deceive people on government measures to address COVID-19. We are therefore disabling the comment section on this article in order to protect both the commenting member and ourselves from potential liability. Should you have additional information that you think we should know, please email [email protected]

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