New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 Photo: APEC NEW ZEALAND 2021/AFP/File
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NZ Prime Minister Ardern tests positive for COVID-19

39 Comments

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who has overseen her country's world-leading response to the coronavirus pandemic, has tested positive for COVID-19, her office announced Saturday.

Ardern's symptoms are moderate and she will isolate at home for seven days, the government said in a statement.

She has already been in isolation since last Sunday, when her partner Clarke Gayford tested positive, and was due to resume her parliamentary duties on Monday.

New Zealand enforced one of the world's most restrictive approaches to managing the initial COVID-19 outbreak in 2020, and its death toll of 892 remains among the lowest of developed nations.

However, it has experienced an Omicron surge since restrictions were loosened in March, with Ardern's positive case among more than 50,000 recorded over the last week.

The statement said Ardern's arrangements for her upcoming trade mission to the United States are unaffected.

Details of the trip are still to be confirmed, although she is scheduled to deliver the commencement address at Harvard University on May 26.

Ardern will not be present in parliament for two high-profile domestic announcements -- the release of the government's emissions reduction plan on Monday and the unveiling of the annual budget on Thursday.

"This is a milestone week for the government and I'm gutted I can't be there for it," Ardern said.

"Our emissions reduction plan sets the path to achieve our carbon zero goal and the budget addresses the long-term future and security of New Zealand's health system.

"But as I said earlier this week, isolating with COVID-19 is a very Kiwi experience this year and my family is no different."

Ardern shared a photo of her positive test on Instagram.

© 2022 AFP

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

39 Comments

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Ardern shared a photo of her positive test on Instagram

a bit too much information

-6 ( +12 / -18 )

impossible.

She was vaxxed, boosted, and living in super-fortress NZ with a zero percent chance of catching Covid thanks to the super effective lockdowns.

I just don't believe it.

-7 ( +22 / -29 )

Let's pray for her to recover soon. It's not that of a big deal anyway.

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

She was vaxxed, boosted, and living in super-fortress NZ with a zero percent chance of catching Covid thanks to the super effective lockdowns.

What lockdowns are you talking about? New Zealand has been extremely successful in their dealing with the pandemic precisely because it recognized lockdowns were not sustainable against the variants and moved to a more flexible model with infections seen as inevitable so it focused on protecting the population against the actual dangerous parts of complications and hospitalizations. 

Observing infections on a system that is not meant to prevent all of them is nothing out of the ordinary.

3 ( +20 / -17 )

shot;

What lockdowns are you talking about? New Zealand has been extremely successful in their dealing with the pandemic precisely because it recognized lockdowns were not sustainable against the variants and moved to a more flexible model with infections seen as inevitable so it focused on protecting the population against the actual dangerous parts of complications and hospitalizations. 

chaser

Ardern's positive case among more than 50,000 recorded over the last week.

-5 ( +9 / -14 )

Ardern's positive case among more than 50,000 recorded over the last week.

Thats the equivalent of 3.3 million Americans in 1 week alone.

New Zealand is 96% vaccinated.

These are disastrous numbers.

-2 ( +15 / -17 )

New Zealand has been extremely successful in their dealing with the pandemic precisely because it recognized lockdowns were not sustainable against the variants and moved to a more flexible model with infections seen as inevitable so it focused on protecting the population against the actual dangerous parts of complications and hospitalizations. 

Boy, oh, boy. NOW after 2 years its suddenly "lockdowns don't work and the vaccines were never meant to end the pandemic, just control hospitalization and deaths"

Quite the 180, and a quiet one at that.

-2 ( +14 / -16 )

@master: Typical anti establishment answer.

Cast your mind back to the early days of the first original wave with people dying in horrendous numbers even with lockdowns in place...imagine the horrors without them. You don't remember the body bags being stored in meat lockers in NY City just as an example??

They did work, and the vaccines also worked. Two necessary steps taken. Wasn't death the most important to prevent all along?

4 ( +16 / -12 )

As I, in gloomy despondency contracting Covid, I took every precaution, Doctors insisted I must move on, Covid is not a danger one can jump out the way of, like a speeding cyclist peering into a smart phone. The hazard risk jeopardy is odourless and unseen.

I hope Jacinda Ardern recovers soon and keeps her spirits up.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

master,

Funny how cases rose after the lockdowns had ended. And I don't remember ever being told the vaccines were 100% effective at preventing infection. The highest I ever saw was 96%, and that was against the earlier variants.

The New Zealand response, despite some missteps in vaccine acquisition and overreaching mandates, has been a great lesson in adapting and evolving in a changing set of circumstances.

The US, since you brought them up, recently recorded their one millionth death. So..."we're number 1!" I guess.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

Boy, oh, boy. NOW after 2 years its suddenly "lockdowns don't work and the vaccines were never meant to end the pandemic, just control hospitalization and deaths"

Quite the 180, and a quiet one at that.

Say what? Someone doesn't remember 'flatten the curve'. Oh dear. How soon we forget. How silly that makes us, err you, look.

3 ( +15 / -12 )

Don't like her policies or her politics. But wish her a speedy recovery- we are all human after all! She is a mother with a little daughter that needs mom to be healthy.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

I don’t know what some people have been reading, but I’ve been reading for a year that vaccination reduces severity of symptoms and deaths in people without severely compromised immune systems.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Cast your mind back to the early days of the first original wave with people dying in horrendous numbers even with lockdowns in place...imagine the horrors without them. You don't remember the body bags being stored in meat lockers in NY City just as an example?? 

that actually never happened.

Remember the 2 giant hospital ships that NY begged for? Remember how they sailed away a few months later having barely anyone on them, and never needed in the first place?

They did work, and the vaccines also worked. Two necessary steps taken. Wasn't death the most important to prevent all along?

they didn't. Theres not a single metric you can point to that shows lockdowns did anything but delay the inevitable surges. There is simply no example u can post that explains why the vast majority of deaths have come after the vaccination became available.

Every single preventative measure has failed miserably.

If governments had taken the advice of the Great Barrington Declaration scientists early on to protect the most vulnerable and let the rest of society live normal lives, wed be over this by now.

-8 ( +10 / -18 )

She’s showing her test because she knows she will be fine and it isn’t such a big deal anymore. Rest up Aunty Jacinda!

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

Another quadruple vaxxed and double masked person living in a highly sanitized environment who tests positive.

-2 ( +13 / -15 )

Say what? Someone doesn't remember 'flatten the curve'. Oh dear. How soon we forget. How silly that makes us, err you, look.

You almost got the quote right, my dear friend.

Remember the full line?

I do! Even though it was well over 2 years ago!

It was; ......say it with me now!;......."Two weeks to flatten the curve"

Silly me.

-3 ( +9 / -12 )

Oh Jacinta you are so good at playing the game..give me a bag I feel like throwing up.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Sure was a long two weeks for quadruple vaxxed and masked liberals to still be getting Covid.

-3 ( +11 / -14 )

@master

Try reading the news and you would know she went traveling to Japan and other places

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

@Bronco

That goes for you also.

Pay attention to where she was travelling and what she was doing.

There's even photos of her meetings not wearing a mask .

Virtually impossible to be 100% protected when traveling to foreign countries.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

It happens not the first or last high profile person to get it, Putin uses a 7m long table, she didn’t nor did a whole raft of world leaders. Their job is to meet multiple people, I don’t want to do that. But they were all vaccinated and recovered, this idea you are immune is nonsense it protects you from the extreme reaction. She will be back at work in a week or two, it’s not like nurovirus if you are vaccinated.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Absolute proof that lockdowns work . And absolute proof of what happens when restrictions are lifted . NZ isn’t China or some other country led by a dictator. Yet they had some of the most “draconian” restrictions in the world . Their “zero Covid” strategy worked …. Until it didn’t …. What changed?

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

Poor lady, wish her well.

New Zealand has one of the highest covid infection rates in the world.

NZ had success when it copied China's zero covid policy and initiated lockdowns, but as soon as NZ eased the restrictions the covid infections and related deaths reached all-time highs there.

Steven MccarthyToday  05:22 pm JST

Absolute proof that lockdowns work . And absolute proof of what happens when restrictions are lifted . NZ isn’t China or some other country led by a dictator. Yet they had some of the most “draconian” restrictions in the world . Their “zero Covid” strategy worked …. Until it didn’t …. What changed?

Absolutely correct, and the scientific and government data proves that.

New Zealand enforced one of the world's most restrictive approaches to managing the initial COVID-19 outbreak in 2020, and its death toll of 892 remains among the lowest of developed nations.

Further proof that the lockdowns were working.

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

Infections has nothing related with lockdowns or not.

It just depends on your own behavior and your close surrounding people, masked or not, boosted or not.

Arden’s partner was positive, therefore no way to escape, and the vaccine is inefficient against Omicron

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

they didn't. Theres not a single metric you can point to that shows lockdowns did anything but delay the inevitable surges.

Yes, until more people were protected with immunity from vaccines, nobody rational understood lockdowns as a way to make people immune by themselves, just to buy enough time so health services can deal with the sick, vaccines to protect them and new drugs to improve importantly how the patients would recover.

Further proof that the lockdowns were working.

Until Delta and Omicron made the measures unsustainable and prone to failures. Which is why New Zealand choose smartly and replaced the approach with a much more rational and well substantiated way to deal with the pandemic avoiding things like what happened in Hong Kong (and Shanghai).

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Interestingly, across the pond, more people have died of ‘Covid’ in the first 5 months of 2022 than in the entire preceding two years. That despite almost the entire adult population now having been vaccinated and boosted to the nth. I know what they say about correlation not being causation, but hey.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Vaccinated does not mean, you are protected from catching the virus, nor even spreading it - clearly exemplified by his example.

The vaccination, may, (statistically speaking) prevent you from experiencing more severe effects once you have caught the virus.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Matrix's agent Smith quote comes to mind: "You hear that, (Mr.) Ardern(son)? That is the sound of inevitability!"

I think it's a question of "when" and not "if" we get the virus.

Hope she recovers soon.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Sure was a long two weeks for quadruple vaxxed and masked liberals to still be getting Covid

Buddy, the world couldn't care any less about Covid being a liberals vs conservative thing. Maybe you could do too. Unless maybe you're still mad some guy lost the elections a couple years ago?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Interestingly, across the pond, more people have died of ‘Covid’ in the first 5 months of 2022 than in the entire preceding two years

Makes sense. They've had a lot more cases due to a more transmissible variant and fewer restrictions.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Yes, until more people were protected with immunity from vaccines, nobody rational understood lockdowns as a way to make people immune by themselves, just to buy enough time so health services can deal with the sick, vaccines to protect them and new drugs to improve importantly how the patients would recover

People who don't have a basic understanding of mathematics might make the mistaken assumption that more Covid infections and related deaths, such as what occurred after New Zealand eased restrictions is better than less covid infections and related deaths that occurred during the lockdowns.

Until Delta and Omicron made the measures unsustainable and prone to failures. Which is why New Zealand choose smartly and replaced the approach with a much more rational and well substantiated way to deal with the pandemic avoiding things like what happened in Hong Kong (and Shanghai).

New Zealand smartly followed China's zero covid policy and as a result had fewer infections and related deaths, according to government statistics and medical experts worldwide.

When anonymous posters who are not medical experts try to tout "success" in non-quantitative terms, they are expressing their conspiracy-laden opinions that are not based in any rationale.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

WELLINGTON New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who has overseen her country's world-leading response to the coronavirus pandemic

Huh? World-leading as judged by who?

The reporter is a local fan, I imagine.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Huh? World-leading as judged by who?

The reporter is a local fan, I imagine.

How did your country do?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The US, UK, Israel have all ended vaccinated vs unvaccinated hospitalizations and death data for the public in the last 2 months.

You might want to ask yourselves why.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

You might want to ask yourselves why.

Why?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Sweden would like a word.

What would they like to say?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Open borders???.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Is this her second time

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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