New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday that all measures against coronaviruses in the country will be lifted from Tuesday unless the border is closed, the virus having been wiped out of the country.
The country will go to national alert level 1 from midnight Monday, Ardern said at a press conference.
She stated that public and private events can take place without restrictions, that the retail and hospitality industries can operate normally and that all public transportation can resume.
The news came after New Zealand said it had no outstanding cases of Covid-19.
The country’s last patient has been released and released from solitary confinement, health officials said on Monday.
The milestone was “very good news” and an accomplishment that all of New Zealand could celebrate, said Department of Health Director General Ashley Bloomfield.
“Having no active cases for the first time since February 28 is certainly an important mark in our journey. But, as we said before, continued vigilance against Covid-19 will continue to be essential,” he said in a statement.
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No new infection for 17 days
New Zealand has won praise for its handling of the pandemic, which involved a strict seven-week lockdown that ended last month after the virus was brought under control.
The South Pacific nation, with a population of five million, has recorded 1,154 confirmed cases and 22 deaths.
There have been no new infections for 17 days and, until Monday, only one case has been active for more than a week.
Details of the last patient were not disclosed for reasons of confidentiality,. But it is believed to be a woman in her 50s who was linked to a cluster in an Auckland nursing home.
“(The) remaining case has been symptomless for 48 hours and is considered cured. The person has now been released from isolation,” said the health ministry.