New Zealand officials announced on Monday that COVID-19 vaccines would soon be mandatory for most workers in the education and health sectors.
why it matters: The country is battling an outbreak of the highly contagious Delta variant, with the Auckland epicenter. NZ’s most populous city has been under lockdown restrictions since August.
- Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced earlier this month that her government was ending its eradication strategy, which proved successful before Delta arrived, and is raising vaccination rates.
big picture: COVID-19 response minister Chris Hipkins said in a briefing Health workers, including doctors, community nurses and pharmacists, must be fully vaccinated by December, mandated Monday.
- Education workers, including teachers and parents who regularly volunteer in schools, have until January.
- Health and education group Welcoming the announcement with the President of the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners Samantha Merton is calling it To call an “adventure, but necessary.”
By numbers: The goal of the New Zealand government is to achieve 90% Vaccination Rate by Christmas.