‘Absolutely hopeless’ - Man leaving Whangaparāoa coronavirus quarantine slams Ministry of Health

Source: 1News

The wife of a man who has been in quarantine at a Whangaparāoa military base for two weeks is relieved to be getting her husband home but believes the Government wasn’t prepared for the situation, while her husband dubbed the Ministry of Health "absolutely hopeless".

Her husband is one of 157 people who were evacuated from the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China. All but two of them have now left the base and are headed home. 

The first person left the military base shortly after 12.30pm today.

Waiting at the base north of Auckland to meet her husband, Julie told 1 NEWS about her family's experience.

“It’s been very stressful, emotional and extremely frustrating," she said.

Frustrating, Julie said, because she doesn't think New Zealand, or the Government, was prepared. 

"There’s been a lot of things that this Government could learn and I hope learn out of this whole situation. 

"Some people have had to share a campervan and when you’re in isolation that’s not ideal."

Speaking to 1 NEWS after reuniting with his family, Julie's husband also had criticism for the Ministry of Health.

"They're hopeless, I wouldn't rely on them for anything," he said, adding he would elaborate more on his statement "another day".

Despite criticism, Julie also thanked everyone who made it possible to get her husband and others safely out of Wuhan and to New Zealand. 

"Obviously, it’s a big operation - huge. Thanks to Air New Zealand," she said. 

"When my husband saw the Air New Zealand plane he felt he had one foot back in New Zealand already." 

Every day felt like a year away

Every day felt like a year away from his family, Tau Xio said as his wife and child were also held in coronavirus quarantine at Whangaparāoa's military base just north of Auckland.

"It's really long, I miss my partner and my kid so much and also I worry about them," Mr Xio told 1 NEWS today, ahead of their release after two weeks.

Mr Xio said from what he'd heard, those in quarantine had been treated well - being well fed and with toys and books for children.

Orginally from Wuhan, Mr Xio said the situation over there was "very serious" with his parents not even allowed to go out amid the city lockdown.

"They [his parents] just stay at home, they do nothing.

"I worry about them as well. It's a big issue in China."