What to do and where to get help if you get COVID-19 while on summer holiday

Before you go

  • Make a plan for if you test positive for COVID-19 and need to isolate or change your holiday plans at short notice. Can you stay where you are? How would you get home?
  • Find out where you can access health services when you’re away.

Test if you feel sick

Te Whatu Ora interim national medical director Dr Pete Watson​ said if you test positive and you’re well enough to drive back home you can, but only if you travel via a private or work vehicle with only your immediate family or household members. If that isn’t possible for whatever reason, you need to be able to isolate where you are or find somewhere else to isolate.”

If you are unsure phone these numbers for advice:

  • Call the dedicated COVID-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 for free COVID health advice anytime, even on public holidays.
  • For any other non-urgent health concerns, call the general Healthline number on 0800 611 116 for free.
  • Check the holiday hours of your usual doctor or health provider.
  • Call the COVID-19 disability helpline for free on 0800 11 12 13 or text 8988. It can help with vaccines, testing, face mask exemptions, managing COVID-19, and any other health concerns you may have. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Hospital emergency departments and most urgent care clinics remain open. If it is an emergency, always call 111.

What to pack

  • Make sure you’ve got rapid antigen tests and masks – officials recommend five RATs per person.
  • If you take regular medication, ensure you’ve got enough to cover at least an extra week if you test positive and have to isolate – including inhalers or other essential equipment. 

You can still get free RATs from a range of locations. Search here for the closest place to get a test, or request free RATs here requestrats.covid19.health.nz.

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