Hunter Park Kindergarten

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Swine flu update from ministry

Pandemic – Moving to the next phase

19 June 2009

The Minister of Health announced this morning that New Zealand is transitioning to a “manage it” phase in its Influenza A (H1N1) Swine Flu strategy. The containment phase has helped restrict the number of cases and slowed the spread of the virus.

The slow spread has been due to the efforts of border control, public health services, schools and early childhood services in identifying and responding to cases as they emerged. The continuing aim is to reduce the impact of the virus on people, communities and the health system at a time when they are already managing the usual winter flu increases.

What does moving to the next phase mean?
Public health authorities in Wellington and Christchurch have announced that they have moved into the new phase today. Auckland is also planning this shift by Monday and it is likely that most other areas of New Zealand will follow very shortly. You can read the Ministry of Health media release here

It is unlikely that early childhood services or schools will be advised to close if they have suspected or confirmed cases, unless they are in an area still in the containment phase. The Ministry of Health advises that there is no need for any restrictions on people returning to work, school or their early childhood service after an overseas trip, unless they have symptoms.

Gatherings such as parent teacher evenings, sports tournaments can continue, with the usual precautions.
Students or staff with symptoms should stay at home in line with normal practice.
Hygiene measures should continue including hand washing before and after eating, keeping hands away from mouths, and covering mouths when coughing or sneezing.
Care should be taken that students who have particular medical conditions or who are susceptible to infection avoid contact with people who have symptoms.

The Ministry of Health wishes to acknowledge the responsiveness of early childhood services and schools, and the measures they have taken to slow the spread of the virus. The Ministry appreciates the additional workload this has meant for everyone involved.

The Ministry of Education has been continually updating its website and will continue with daily updates on Medical information is on the Ministry of Health website Travel information is available on

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