Public/Global Health

New Zealand prime minister isolates after COVID-19 exposure

Associated Press

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Saturday announced that she is now self-isolating after she was exposed to a person who tested positive for the coronavirus.

Ardern, along with New Zealand’s Governor-General Cindy Kiro, was exposed to the virus during a flight on Jan. 22 from Kerikeri to Auckland, according to The Associated Press.

Kiro has also begun self-isolating, the news outlet noted.

“The Prime Minister is asymptomatic and is feeling well,” Ardern’s office said in a statement to AP. “In line with Ministry of Health advice she will be tested immediately tomorrow and will isolate until Tuesday.”

New Zealand health officials on Saturday named at least a dozen flights as potential exposure, noting the possibility that individuals on the flight crew may have been infected with the virus, AP reported.

According to authorities, genome sequencing is set to be completed on Sunday to determine whether the infected person had the omicron variant of the virus, according to AP.

Nearly 77 percent of all New Zealanders have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to Our World in Data. About 93 percent of people 12 and older have received the shots, New Zealand officials told AP.

Tags Coronavirus New Zealand

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