Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19)
How has the pandemic affected you personally and what was your experience of it over the past few months?
I live in New Zealand. Pretty much by the end of March our Prime Minister (in consultation with our Health Department and central Government) closed our borders and put the entire country into mandatory lockdown for one month. This was for all citizens besides those deemed as “Essential Workers”. You could leave your homes to visit supermarkets and other essential services but you could not travel too far. You could walk around outside and to get fresh air and exercise but you had to maintain strict social distancing guidelines.
Our PM and Director-General of Health provided daily briefings keeping us updated on our progress. The Prime Minister even did a Facebook live session from her home answering questions from the general public. Because of things like this, the majority of the country did as they were told and stayed home. No protests about lockdown, no tantrums over wearing masks (masks have never been a requirement here).
Once the month was up they began carefully removing the restrictions until we got to where we are now. We have what they call a “New Normal” that’s as close to what we had before as we can get to. The border is still shut to everyone but returning citizens and other exempted persons.
Our official tally was around 1500 total people who contracted the virus with 22 deaths. We currently have no people in the general public with the virus. We nearly made it to two weeks with zero active cases however as people return to the country from other places some have brought the virus with them. Everyone who enters the country goes into quarantine for 2 weeks. But social distancing is gone, limits on the numbers of people attending events has gone. Outdoor concerts have returned. I deem our strategy a success even though it didn’t come without some losses particularly jobs, the 22 lives (and those who took their own lives because of the pandemic). Some businesses have had to shut.