Covid-19 expert Shaun Hendy implores Kiwis to wear masks regardless of alert level requirements

Source: 1News

The professor who has modelled the spread of Covid-19 in New Zealand said today he would have preferred a move to “Alert Level 1.5” instead of Alert Level 1 for the rest of the nation aside from Auckland, as he implored people to wear masks despite what Government advice is.

University of Auckland's Shaun Hendy said the key risk is that undiagnosed cases in Auckland, which remains at Alert Level 2, will spread Covid-19 to other parts of the country.

“We don’t want someone from Auckland to travel to another part of the country and kick off another wave in a different part of the country,” Hendy said.

“We’re still cognisant of the fact that there is the odd case at the border who is slipping through the quarantine isolation procedures.

“As the actual detected cases drops, so do our estimates of the undetected cases. We’re not getting to the point where we think there may be few undetected cases out there and that starts to lower the risks of things like big gathering sizes.”

Hendy reiterated the benefits of mask-wearing, which Aucklanders will continue to be required to do on public transport even after the alert level drops.

“The key risk is that there may still be undiagnosed cases out there in Auckland,” he said.

“We don’t want someone from Auckland to travel to another part of the country and kick off another wave in another part of the country.

“I don’t enjoy wearing a mask but it’s a relatively simple and easy thing to do,” he said.

“If that could prevent us going into lockdown again then I would be prepared to do that, and I would like to think other people around the country could do that too.

“Of course, we don’t need the Government to tell us to do that, we can as individuals chose to do it.”