Tertiary and international COVID-19 bulletin
4 July 2022
Tertiary and international COVID-19 bulletin
COVID-19 Protection Framework settings
All of New Zealand is at Orange.
COVID-19 reinfection: Updated Ministry of Heath guidance
The Ministry of Health has updated advice on the risk of reinfection from COVID-19 within 90 days of a previous infection.
This update is based on increasing evidence that reinfections can occur earlier than 90 days.
No need to retest within 28 days of a previous infection
If a person has had COVID-19 in the last 28 days and they feel unwell with COVID-19 symptoms again, they do not need to take a rapid antigen test (RAT).
It is likely these symptoms relate to the initial infection or are caused by a different viral infection. They should stay home and recover.
Retest if it is 29 days or more since previous infection
If a person gets new COVID-19 symptoms and it is 29 days or more since their first infection, they should take a RAT and record their result (positive or negative) on My Covid Record.
If the person tests:
- positive for COVID-19 (at 29 days or more), this will be treated as a reinfection and they must isolate for seven days while they recover. Day 0 is the day their symptoms started or when they tested positive, whichever came first.
- negative, they might still have COVID-19, but their symptoms could also be caused by another infection such as the flu or another virus. If their symptoms continue, they should repeat a RAT 48 hours later. If this is still negative, they should stay at home until at least 24 hours after their symptoms resolve.
If a person tests positive for COVID-19 and they have underlying conditions or feel their symptoms getting worse, they should call Healthline on 0800 358 5453 or their doctor/healthcare provider.
If a person tests positive for COVID-19 again (at 29 days or more since first infection), their household contacts also need to isolate until the confirmed case’s 7-day isolation period is complete.
Household contacts do not need to isolate if they have:
- had COVID-19 in the last 90 days and are recovered
- completed isolation as a household contact in the last 10 days.
Household contacts who do not need to isolate should still monitor symptoms and if any develop, they should isolate, take a RAT, and follow the advice above.
They should also take precautions when out and about, such as by wearing a mask when indoors, maintaining good hygiene practices, not visiting places with vulnerable people like hospitals, aged care and disability facilities, and they should avoid crowded indoor events.
For more information, see the Ministry of Health website.
Returning to education after self-isolation
A reminder that medical certificates or tests are not required to return to education after self-isolation.
With GPs under increasing pressure with winter illnesses, please remember that students and staff do not need to provide a medical certificate or evidence of a negative RAT or PCR test to return to their campus or other tertiary education location after isolating with COVID-19.
If a student or staff member has been isolating with COVID-19 and is feeling well after seven days, they can return to their normal education activities.
For more information, see the Unite against COVID-19 website.
New Zealand border fully reopening to international students
The fourth border exception (Cohort 4) has reached its allocation of 5,000 international students. Providers will no longer be able to nominate international students to the border exception.
As announced on 11 May 2022, visa processing for international students has been brought forward to 31 July 2022.
More information can be found on the Immigration NZ website.
The Government has made changes to post-study work visas and the funds that international students are required to have available while they are in New Zealand.
For more information see Immigration NZ's website.
Specialised guidelines for secondary-tertiary
Specialised COVID-19 Protection Framework guidelines are available to support delivery arrangements across the secondary-tertiary interface and for workplace-based learning, including for:
- secondary-tertiary programmes (trades academies)
- services academies
- Secondary-Tertiary Alignment Resource (STAR)
- gateway programmes.
For more information, see the Youth Guarantee website.
Second booster now available for higher-risk people
From Tuesday 28 June, a second booster of the COVID-19 vaccine has been made available to those at increased risk of severe illness.
The second COVID-19 booster is available for:
- everyone over the age of 50 (and is recommended for anyone over the age of 65)
- Māori and Pacific peoples older than 50
- people who are severely immunocompromised
- health, aged-care and disability workers over the age of 30.
The second booster dose is available six months after the previous dose, and it should be postponed for three months after a COVID-19 infection.
Anyone who is eligible for a second booster can book an appointment for a booster dose through Book My Vaccine or by calling the COVID-19 vaccination healthline on 0800 28 29 26 (8am to 8pm, seven days a week).
For those not considered at risk of severe illness from COVID-19, a two-dose primary course and a booster dose provides very good protection against severe illness from COVID-19. We encourage everyone to get their COVID-19 booster.
For more information visit the Ministry of Health website.
Reminder: Face masks an important preventative measure
A reminder that face masks remain an important preventative measure.
While at the Orange setting of the COVID-19 Protection Framework, the use of face masks on site at tertiary education facilities is strongly encouraged, particularly indoors.
Face masks are an important way to protect ourselves and others from COVID-19 and are one of the key health measures that we can use to slow the spread of COVID-19 indoors.
People are encouraged to wear a face mask whenever they are in a public indoor setting, and when it is hard for them to maintain physically distance from people they don’t know.
Find more information on mask use at Orange on Te Mahau and Unite against COVID-19 websites.
Be prepared for COVID-19
Whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, everyone should prepare for what they need to do if they get COVID-19.
The Unite against COVID-19 website has resources to help you.
Travelling and COVID-19
While vaccination is highly effective, it is still possible to get COVID-19.
You may get it while you are away from home even if you are following the rules. You should prepare for what you may need to do if this happens.
Email address for questions
All tertiary and international COVID-19 related queries can be emailed to us through our central mailbox COVID19.TertiaryandInternational@education.govt.nz.