COVID-19 Health and Safety Response
The COVID-19 pandemic will continue to require a health and safety response to minimise transmission of COVID-19. The same measures used to respond to COVID-19 will also help reduce transmission of other infectious illnesses and will form part of your overall health and safety plan.
Latest COVID-19 updates
To read the latest COVID-19 updates for early learning services, visit our He Pitopito Kōrero | Early Learning Bulletin page.
Health measures to reduce transmission
There are a range of health measures that can be implemented to reduce the risk of transmission of infectious illnesses, including COVID-19.
Immunisation can protect people against harmful infections, which can cause serious complications including death.
COVID-19 vaccination provides very good protection against developing severe disease. Everyone aged 5 and over can be vaccinated for free. If you’ve had COVID-19 you’ll need to wait 3 months.
More information on COVID-19 Vaccination
New Zealand Immunisation Schedule | Ministry of Health NZ
If you are sick – stay home and get tested
If you have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms, stay home and test. Call your doctor or Healthline on 0800 358 5453 if you need advice.
If children present as unwell on arrival parents will be asked to take them home. If children become unwell, parents or caregivers will be contacted to come and pick them up.
Good hygiene practices
Includes avoiding touching your face, good hand hygiene, cough, and sneeze etiquette, and regularly cleaning and disinfecting surfaces.
Indoor spaces should be well ventilated, for example by opening windows, doors, and any vents. If mechanical ventilation is used, make sure the ventilation system is regularly maintained.
Ventilation in early learning services
Cases of COVID-19 will continue to arise in communities. Staff and whānau should follow public health guidance to identify who needs to self-isolate and get tested. Services do not need to undertake contact tracing for their staff or children. However, visitors should be captured in a visitor register as is normal practice.
Masks for staff and children are not required in early learning services, including certified playgroups.
Services can set their own policy for visitors, including parents, to their centre.
Physical distancing is not required in early learning settings. However, distancing between staff and other adults is encouraged wherever possible. Parents and visitors are encouraged to maintain physical distancing from other adults and children as much as possible.
Children with complex medical needs
Parents of children/tamariki with complex medical needs may seek advice from their health professional.
Risk assessment and planning for COVID-19
Regular review of health and safety plans including a risk assessment, is good practice.
You should undertake an assessment in consultation with your staff, their representatives, and any other relevant parties such as parents and those in your wider community.