During New Zealand’s Level 4 lockdown, everyone is required to stay home as much as possible, but those with symptoms of COVID-19 may need to seek self-isolation accommodation. This requirement is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, even when parts of the country begin to move into lower alert levels.
Here, we look at the difference between staying home and self-isolation and explain what self-isolation really entails.
What is self-isolation?
Currently, there are many different terms people use to describe the various levels of isolation that we’re observing in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, and self-isolation is probably the most frequently used. You may not know, however, that self-isolation is not what all citizens are required to practice as part of the level 4 lockdown, and it also differs from quarantine. Officially, the government guidelines ask that people ‘stay home’, and this is not exactly the same thing as self-isolation.
Self-isolation is the specific precaution that is used when someone within your bubble is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. Essentially, it means distancing yourself from everyone, even those you are living with during the lockdown. This involves several simple, common-sense steps, like washing hands often, keeping a 2m distance from others, and not sharing dishes, glasses, or utensils.
Many people have been asked to self-isolate by the government, including everyone who has recently arrived from overseas. Upon landing in NZ, these travellers have been asked to observe a mandatory 14 days of self-isolation, and this means keeping a distance from everyone, even if part of a bubble.
Government guidelines for those who develop COVID-19 symptoms include regularly washing clothes, sheets and towels, in order to avoid infecting others nearby. Regularly sterilising all shared spaces in a household is also a good standard for a bubble with members that are self-isolating.
Those who are self-isolating cannot leave the house to get groceries or go for a walk until they recover. Supplies that are delivered to you should be left outside the door if you are alone.
Who needs to self-isolate?
As mentioned above, those who are exhibiting symptoms are encouraged to self-isolate within their bubble. As of the time of writing, on the 21/04/2020, international travellers to New Zealand do not self-isolate—they are instead required to quarantine, which means isolation in a government-approved facility, and this comes with stricter rules.
However, it is now required for all close-contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases to self-isolate. This means if someone in your bubble develops symptoms and needs to self-isolate, all other members of the bubble should assume they are infected, and also self-isolate.
Self-isolating in a temporary location
The government has made allowances for those who may need to self-isolate in temporary accommodation, and CPG Hotels has been cleared to provide this service at several locations throughout the country, including Auckland, Wellington, Picton and Rotorua. Affordable packages are offered to those who work in essential services and want to isolate away from family and friends, or those who need urgent housing arrangements. There are also options for both Kiwis and ex-pats from other countries who have been unable to return to a location overseas before international borders closed. CPG Hotels is here to assist anyone who has been caught without accommodation during the lockdown.
CPG Hotels has been approved to provide accommodation that complies with all self-isolation standards that the government has put in place. All CPG staff, from reception to cleaners, have been trained with guidance from the Ministry of Health on how to provide this service. Health and safety is our top priority, for both guests, and our staff.
Stay informed, stay safe.
If you want to learn more, visit the government’s website on COVID-19, or contact us to find out more about self-isolation accommodation options across New Zealand. If you do need to stay with us to self-isolate, rest assured we will look after you every step of the way.