Therapy Areas: Infectious Diseases
New Zealand aims to boost COVID-19 vaccinations as cases decline
14 September 2021 -

New Zealand reported 15 new local COVID-19 infections on 15 September 2021, a decline over 33 cases reported on the prior day, Reuters news agency reported on Tuesday.

About 1.7 million people will continue to stay in lockdown in the country's largest city Auckland until next week, to control a cluster of the highly infectious Delta virus variant. Auckland's lockdown has shut schools, offices and public places, with people allowed to leave home only for exercise or to buy essential items. In the rest of the country, the lockdown was lifted last week.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern asked New Zealanders on Tuesday to get vaccinated as soon as possible, as it was the only way to beat the spread of COVID-19 and see curbs lifted in Auckland.

Ardern was quoted as telling a news conference: "The vaccine is the best tool we have in our toolbox and our ticket to greater freedom. The more people who are vaccinated, the fewer restrictions you have to have."

To boost the vaccination programme, New Zealand has reportedly bought doses of Pfizer (NYSE:PFE)/BioNTech (Nasdaq:BNTX) COVID-19 vaccine doses from Spain and Denmark.

According to Ardern, there is capacity to administer 220,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine in the Auckland region this week.

Vaccine buses will begin plying this week to reach more people, she added.

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