Tag Archives: far

Covid 19 coronavirus: Five ways New Zealand can strengthen its borders | Instant News


Public health experts have multiplied calls for a “benchmarking exercise” with Australia on Covid-19 and border management. Photo / Dean Purcell

Public health experts have multiplied calls for a “benchmarking exercise” with Australia on Covid-19 and border management, after picking out more than a dozen New Zealand failures so far.

In a blog post published todayThe University of Otago research team argues that New Zealand still does not have optimal control over its borders against Covid-19, and defines five ways to combat further leakage – including offering vaccinations to arriving travelers.

Their analysis found that, since last July, there have been 13 identified border failures, along with six failures that occurred in managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) facilities.

The largest resulted in August’s Auckland cluster, which involved 179 cases and three deaths – and was one of two failures that forced the city to be isolated on three occasions.

The researchers cited official estimates that put the daily costs of locking Auckland up to $ 75 million in GDP, along with 250 job losses.

Overall, however, they said New Zealand had done “very well” with the pandemic response, which was among the best in the world.

While the vaccine rollout that started with border workers was a welcome development, they said a “green zone” of New Zealand’s quarantine-free travel to form with Australia would present more challenges.

“This green zone means our biosecurity status will be more linked to Australia,” they said.

Therefore, it is even more important to reduce the risk of border failures that could disrupt green zone travel, especially if the outbreak is initially insufficiently contained.

“This situation provides us with an opportunity to compare our current measures with those used by the eight states and territories in Australia.”

Among the five measures they recommend is slashing the number of infected travelers arriving at MIQ facilities – something that means receiving fewer arrivals from “red zone” countries such as the US, UK and India, along with extra measures such as pre-departure testing.

All returnees may also be offered vaccination on arrival.

“While this will only offer partial immunity while in MIQ, it may still be of benefit.”

They are again making a case for only using MIQ facilities in major cities for the lowest-risk travelers – such as those from Australia until the bubble opens – and exploring purpose-built facilities away from city centers.

In addition, they said all MIQ areas that were shared, such as those used for sports and smoking, were removed, with the requirement for returnees to stay in their rooms as was the case in Australia.

“There should be practical support for returnees who wish to exercise in their rooms, and smokers should be offered nicotine replacement therapy and other smoking cessation care and support.”

Finally, they are calling for a daily PCR-based saliva testing mandate for MIQ workers.

“This option could also be explored for travelers in MIQ in addition to the current testing regimen to allow for comparative assessments,” they said.

“This test is used in parts of Australia and in other countries.”

The researchers go on to suggest New Zealand should aim to have a “failure rate” compared to Australia.

“As of March 29, New Zealand’s MIQ system had a seven-day average turnover of four new positive cases per day – suggesting that the risk of transmission in MIQ may still be large,” they said.

“To ensure the success of the upcoming quarantine-free green zone between New Zealand and Australia, more preventive interventions are needed to reduce the frequency of these failures.

“Conducting MIQ benchmarking exercises and broader border management measures in Australian states and territories can identify potential improvements in policy and practice in both countries.”

Yesterday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern – who will announce a start date for next week’s bubble – said arrangements with Australia were still being worked out.

While he did not share specifics on the criteria for closing borders in a particular outbreak, Ardern pointed out the importance of providing predictability to tourists.

That includes telling them how prepared they are, if they have to stay where they are in the event of a border closure.

He also gave some indications of how New Zealand might interact with the separate states.

“Yes, there really is a possibility that if a country has an outbreak, if we believe that border controls are in place, we can shut down that state, while continuing to travel elsewhere.”

.



image source

Community members are taking a different approach to addressing food insecurity in the Louisville area | Instant News


Addressing food insecurity has become more important over the past year when Feeding America determined the percentage of Kentucky’s population dealing with it increased by 8% since 2018. According to the report, Kentucky ranks eighth in the country for the highest percentage of the population facing food insecurity. The head of the Dare to Care program, Annette Ball, said that non-profit organizations have been feeling the impact of the pandemic. “It’s really the need that we’ve experienced has occurred,” said Ball. “People who probably never had to access food aid before the pandemic and now that the pandemic has been going on for a long time, they need to get help.” Dare to Care’s new community kitchen facility opened in June and Ball said it came at a time when they needed to increase food production for those in need. “Our distribution is up nearly 20% compared to last year. We had a pretty big jump at first, down a little but still 20%,” said Ball. Volunteers like Debbie Weinstein allow nonprofits to prepare 6,000 meals a week, most of which go to children, according to Ball. “We thought 670 boxes today and we currently fill up little bags of dried fruit,” Weinstein said. “It really saddens me because I know I have a lot of food at home in our fridge and I don’t have to worry about what I’m going to eat next.” The Feeding America report says 20% of Kentuckians are worried about their next meal. While some organizations like Dare to Care deliver ready-made food, Lina Laverty takes a different approach through her Hilltop Organic Farm. “Give someone a fish, you’re going to feed them for a day,” said Laverty. “Teach him how to fish, you will feed him for life. The concept is the same and that’s what we are based on this. We will teach them how to grow their own food.” park, Laverty says she will teach young people for free how to defend themselves and their families on a small piece of land. Laverty focuses on needy families as participating children will bring home a box of food from the garden every weekend. “We will not only feed them all year round, all season long, but we will also teach them how to raise them after that so that the parents will benefit, the family will benefit,” said Laverty. Ball says you can visit the Dare to Care website or call a nonprofit to request a meal service. You can also contact Hilltop Organic Farm to participate in community gardens.

Addressing food insecurity has become more important over the past year when Feeding America determined the percentage of Kentucky’s population dealing with it increased by 8% since 2018.

According to report, Kentucky ranks eighth in the state for the highest percentage of the population dealing with food insecurity. Dare to Care Chief Program Officer Annette Ball said that nonprofits are already feeling the effects of the pandemic.

“There really was a need across the board that we experienced,” said Ball. “People who probably never had to access food aid before the pandemic and now that the pandemic has been going on for so long, they need to get help.”

Dare to Care’s new community kitchen facility opened in June and Ball said it came at a time when they needed to increase food production for those in need.

“Our distribution is up nearly 20% compared to last year. We had a pretty big jump at first, down a little but still 20%,” said Ball.

Volunteers like Debbie Weinstein allow nonprofits to prepare 6,000 meals a week, most of which go to children, according to Ball.

“We did think about 670 boxes today and we are currently filling little bags of dried fruit,” Weinstein said. “It really saddens me because I know I have a lot of food at home in our fridge and I don’t have to worry about what I’m going to eat next.”

The Feeding America report says 20% of Kentuckians are worried about their next meal. While some organizations like Dare to Care provide prepared meals, Lina Laverty takes a different approach through her Hilltop Organic Farming.

“Give someone a fish, you’re going to feed them for a day,” said Laverty. “Teach him how to fish, you will feed him for life. The concept is the same and that’s what we are based on this. We will teach them how to grow their own food.”

Through a community park, Laverty said she would teach young people for free how to defend themselves and their families on a small piece of land. Laverty focuses on needy families as participating children will bring home a box of food from the garden every weekend.

“We will not only feed them all year round, all season long, but we will also teach them how to raise them after that so that the parents will benefit, the family will benefit,” said Laverty.

Ball says you can visit the Dare to Care website or call a nonprofit to request a meal service. You can also contact Hilltop Organic Farm to participate in community gardens.

.



image source

Rugby league: New Zealand Soldiers kick off the Nathan Brown era with a promising draw against the Gold Coast Titans in NRL trials | Instant News


Sports

Josh Curran of the Warriors scores a try during the NRL trial match against the Titans. Photos / Photosport

It’s best to always be vigilant about the pre-season NRL trials. Coaches and teams always have specific agendas to work with – rather than just grinding results – and it’s advisable not to get carried away about performance, good or bad.

That’s what happened to the Warriors in the past. The excitement following a 48-4 trial win over the Broncos in 2013 was quickly lost when they lost five of their first seven games and there are several other related examples.

But Saturday’s game against The Titans, which ended in a 12-12 draw, was important. It was the first course for Nathan Brown and the seventh new signing, after significant personnel changes in the low season.

It is also their only preseason chance, after last week’s trial against Storm was canceled due to travel restrictions.

Neither team wants to reveal too much – especially when they face each other in the first round of the NRL season – but it’s time for the latest issue of the Warriors to show something up and it’s quite promising.

They showed good speed and energy and had some bright moments in attack, while their defense improved as the match went on, with some great grabs in the second half.

Both squads have been rusty at times, with the Warriors also losing half-organization Chanel Harris-Tavita, out with a quad injury, and hampered by the loss of bitch Wayde Egan, who left with a shoulder injury after just 15 minutes.

Addin Fonua-Blake’s gigantic brace provides good muscle up front, giving an idea of ​​his ability to cross the line of advantage while Ben Murdoch-Masila creates a 40 meter high statue with his first touch after halftime, and the one-two hit by the twin towers could be something to enjoy, if they can also bring discipline in defense.

Perhaps the new player chosen was the former Dragons midfielder, Euan Aitken, who took some powerful punches and displayed a willingness to get involved, as well as the defensive initiative.

Bunty Afoa and Leeson Ah Mau are again welcomed, having barely been seen in 2020 due to injuries. Second rower Bayley Sironen demonstrated his versatility, turning to prostitutes in the second half.

The Titans got their best of the opening quarter, with two attempts in four minutes, to Tino Fa’asuamaleaui and Jarrod Wallace. When he played for Queensland and Storm last season, strong Fa’asuamaleaui was tough to deal with through midfield.

Sean O’Sullivan and Nikorima teamed up well to send Josh Curran across in the 29th minute and the Warriors should have extended their lead before halftime, unable to capitalize on four straight sets on the Titans line.

The Warriors were sharper after halftime and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck’s sharp break sent Jazz Tevaga under the post just before the hour mark.

That shows what is possible when Tuivasa-Sheck gets the ball up front, which is the hope for 2021.

Brown vacated the bench for the last 20 minutes, with several young players gaining playing time. A formidable defensive play from Map Hiku stopped certain attempts from former teammate Patrick Herbert, while the Warriors did very well to withstand the continuing pressure in the final 10 minutes.

Soldier 12 (J Curran, J Tevaga tries; K Nikorima 2 goals)

Titans 12 (T Fa’asuamaleaui, J Wallace tries; J Fogarty 2 goals)

First Half: 6-12

.



image source

Covid 19 coronavirus: National wants MIQ to be moved outside of downtown Auckland | Instant News


Rydges Hotel is one of the Auckland CBD hotels that is used as a Covid-19 MIQ facility. Photo / Dean Purcell

National is calling on the Government to move the Covid-19 quarantine and manage isolation facilities from downtown Auckland as a way to protect New Zealand’s largest city from a future lockdown.

Chris Bishop, party spokesman for the Covid-19 response, said this could be in the form of a purpose-built facility on the outskirts of Auckland.

There are currently 5,583 people in managed isolation facilities and 76 in quarantine, many of which are housed in facilities within Auckland’s CBD.

The downtown hotels currently used for MIQ are Pullman, Stamford Plaza, Rydges, M Social, and Grand Millennium.

National Party spokesman for the Covid-19 response, Chris Bishop.  Photo / NZME
National Party spokesman for the Covid-19 response, Chris Bishop. Photo / NZME

“The recent Pullman hotel case shows how much risk Auckland is from another community outbreak due to ingrained problems with MIQ,” Bishop said.

“New Zealand can’t afford to let yo-yoing in and out of lockdown and the Auckland economy can’t afford to continue bleeding more than $ 30 million a day.”

Bishop said the Victorian government is currently planning a cabin-style hub outside Melbourne’s CBD to replace its MIQ hotel following a recent outbreak that led to a lockdown.

“This facility will likely be a village with a pre-built one-story building with a separate ventilation system for each room. The returnees share the facilities but do not have the same roof,” he said.

The Pullman Hotel is one of the hotels in the city center that is used as a Covid-19 MIQ facility related to the recent Covid community outbreak.  Photo / Dean Purcell.
The Pullman Hotel is one of the hotels in the city center that is used as a Covid-19 MIQ facility related to the recent Covid community outbreak. Photo / Dean Purcell.

“Having plenty of fresh air reduces the risk of airborne transmission among returnees, while an isolated location makes it harder for the virus to find its way to densely populated urban areas where it can spread more quickly.”

National believes a similar facility should be built on vacant lots near Auckland Airport, Bishop said and called for an investigation to begin immediately.

These costs can be covered by contributions from the Government, the private sector and payments made by returning New Zealand residents.

“A purpose-built facility may prove expensive but the costs will be reduced due to the economic impact which makes Auckland more locked up,” Bishop said.

“The government must act now to address the problem before the Covid-19 outbreak forces another lockdown. We have more than enough wake-up calls.”

University of Otago Public Health professors Nick Wilson and Michael Baker have called for the closure of the MIQ facility in Auckland “to protect major economic centers” and eliminate the use of shared space at the facility.

“It is clear that New Zealand will need MIQ facilities for some time to come with mass vaccination not possible until the end of the year,” Bishop said.

“We have done well to prevent Covid-19 from spreading, but it will come at a price. Maintaining this effort will require innovative thinking, especially as the virus mutates.

Bishop said if done right, the new facility could be turned into housing once it has served its original purpose.

.



image source

Covid-19: Switzerland has seen a record decline in hotel stays | Instant News


(MENAFN – Swissinfo) The Swiss hotel sector recorded a 40% drop in overnight stays in 2020 compared to 2019. Foreign demand fell by 66% as tourists moved away due to the pandemic, the latest statistics show.

This content is published on 19 February 2021 – 12:21 19 February 2021 – 12:21 Swiss Tourism / Federal Statistical Office / SWI swissinfo.ch/ilj

“The extraordinary context of Covid-19 explains an unprecedented decline at levels not seen since the late 1950s,” the Swiss Federal Statistical Office said in a statement on the FridayExternal link.

Swiss demand fell less drastically (–8.6%) to 16.4 million overnight. Overall, the sector recorded 23.7 million overnight stays for 2020.

Swiss Tourism, the country’s national tourism organization, refers to 2020 as ‘Annus Horribilis’. “This year will remain in the minds of the tourism sector as the biggest challenge since the Second World War,” he said in an External links statement accompanying his press conference on the situation on Friday.

It said the industry had been experiencing months of business closures, very few European guests (6 million / -51%), and almost no foreign tourists. The number of staying Swiss residents – the summer months are especially popular in the mountains – cannot overcome this, he added.

More

More

MENAFN19022021000210011054ID1101629265

Legal Disclaimer: MENAFN provides information “as is” without warranty of any kind. We are not responsible or liable for the accuracy, content, images, videos, licenses, completeness, legality or reliability of the information contained in this article. If you have a complaint or copyright issue related to this article, please contact the provider above.

.



image source