To understand the risk of oveaseas returnees contracting Covid-19 from MIQ facility

Raghu P Pushpakath made this Official Information request to Chris Hipkins

Response to this request is long overdue. By law Chris Hipkins should have responded by now (details and exceptions). The requester can complain to the Ombudsman.

From: Raghu P Pushpakath

Dear Chris Hipkins,

This request is made to you since you hold the portfolio of Minister for COVID-19 Response.

I am a New Zealander living overseas for past few years and wanting to return to New Zealand in the near future.

I understand that all overseas arrivals to NZ need to enter into MIQ facility for 7-day institutional quarantine, even when they are fully vaccinated and tested Covid negative in the pre-departure Covid tests. I also understand that many local community Covid-19 cases are now doing isolation/quarantine in MIQ facilities around the country.

This request is to understand the risk of contracting Covid-19 for those negatively-tested overseas returnees when they spend time in the MIQ facilities which are also occupied by the local infections.

My questions are with respect to the as-of date of November 2, 2021.

1) As of this date, which all MIQ facilities do host both the locally infected persons and the overseas arrivals? Also for each such facility, please give a break up of the number rooms occupied by the local infections and number of rooms occupied by the overseas arrivals.

2) Suppose an overseas person arrives New Zealand with Covid-negative predeparture tests and Covid-negative in the arrival tests done at NZ, and then occupies an MIQ facility shared by the local infections. How many such individual overseas arrivals become Covid-positive during the tests closer to the end of their MIQ term, and which specific MIQ facilities were they placed?

3) When an overseas arriving person does get infected with Covid-19 during the end of their MIQ term, how do you identify whether this person got infected during their stay in the MIQ facility? What are the specific measures taken to identify this? And, if such specific measures are in place for this, I also would like to know how these measures are used to understand & mitigate the risks of putting Covid-negative overseas arrivals into an MIQ facility where a growing number of local infections are placed already.

I hope to get response to these queries in a timely manner.

Yours faithfully,


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From: C Hipkins (MIN)
Chris Hipkins

Kia ora


Thank you for taking the time to write to Hon Chris Hipkins, Minister for
COVID-19 Response, Minister of Education, Minister for the Public Sector
and Leader of the House.

We are receiving a significant amount of correspondence at the moment and,
although your email will be carefully considered and noted, it is not
possible to respond to each individual email. However, please note that
this is an automatic response and we will endeavour to respond to your
individual queries as soon as we can.

You can find the latest information and guidance about Alert Levels at
The locations of interest are set out
at [2]
encourage anyone who has been at one of the locations of interest at the
time specified to self-isolate and call Healthline on 0800 358 5453. You
can find the nearest testing centre to you
at [3]

We appreciate that this is a challenging time. If you need to talk, you
can call or text 1737 at any time. Mental health and wellbeing resources
are also available
at [4]
about the financial support available to individuals and businesses can be
found at [5]

We also understand that there are several other aspects to the response
that are very important to people. You can find more information about:

o Managed Isolation and Quarantine (MIQ)
at [6], including how to request an emergency
at [7]
make a complaint or request a review of your application by
emailing [8]
o Travel with Australia
at [9]
you are in Australia, please register
at [10] and if it is an emergency,
contact the Consulate on +64 99 20 20 20.
o Vaccines at [11], including
how to book your vaccine
at [12] by calling 0800 28
29 26.
o Vaccine data and statistics
at [13]
Medsafe’s vaccine safety monitoring reports
at [14]
o The Government’s plan to reconnect New Zealand with the rest of the
at [16]

Please remember to take care, and be kind. We have beaten COVID-19 before,
and we can do it again.

Ngā mihi,

Office of Hon Chris Hipkins

Minister for COVID-19 Response | Minister of Education | Minister for the
Public Sector | Leader of the House | MP for Remutaka

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