Taupō man in limbo because Covid cases are isolating at home

A Taupō man says he’s been forced to take a month off work because the Ministry of Health will not move his Covid-positive household members into MIQ.

He initially agreed to allow the positive household members to isolate at home but changed his mind two days later after a Ministry of Health worker informed him his isolation period would only begin when theirs ended.

The man is double vaccinated and has produced a negative test.

“I said, ‘woah, hang on a minute, that wasn’t explained to me on the Saturday when you asked if they could stay here. Otherwise my answer would have been no’.

“I said, ‘you need to get them into MIQ straight away because I can’t afford to have a month off work, I need to get back to work as soon as possible’. They said, ‘oh well, we’ll see what we can do’”.

The man has not heard from the Ministry about this in a week, despite repeated assurances a supervisor would be in touch.

“No one has tried to get a hold of me. Today is Sunday now and I still have not heard anything from the Ministry of Health.

“My understanding is, I’m still stuck here until the other boys are released.”

The man picks up wheelie bins for a living, and there’s only one other colleague who knows his route.

He’s desperate to get back to work.

“My bosses are a bit frantic at the moment because my boss is the only other one in the Taupō area who knows my run. I’ve got to get in and out of the truck 160 times a day, roughly, and he is waiting to hear about a knee operation because he needs to get a knee replacement.

“My company has to pay for someone to come over from Rotorua to hop in the truck with him so he can do all the running around. They’re going to need to get this guy over for 28 days.

“So, it’s not just affecting me, it’s costing my company now and no one seems to really care.”

He said he wished someone had informed him what the isolation rules were at the beginning.

“I was prepared to do the quarantine, but I was prepared for two weeks. No one explained that I was going to be doing 28.

“There’s a lot of people out there who believe the same.”

The Ministry of Health has been approached for comment.