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Unite against COVID-19


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Have symptoms? Get a COVID-19 Test - Contact your GP or call 0800 VIRUS-19 (0800 847 8719)

Important note - Auckland is currently at Alert Level 3, and the rest of New Zealand is at Alert Level 2, while we work to contain an outbreak. Information about these cases, and locations of interest can be found at

If you:

  • attended these locations at the times identified, or
  • have symptoms of COVID-19

Please call 0800 VIRUS 19 (0800 847 8719) and arrange to be tested.

0800 VIRUS 19 Call Centre hours
8.30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday
9am to 12pm, weekends

If you have recently visited Auckland, Taranaki or Waikato but have not been at a location of interest at the specified time where a case may have been, and do not have any symptoms, you do not need to be tested for COVID-19. Neither do any of your contacts.

It is unnecessary for workplaces to require testing for these people.

The Southern health system is at Alert Level 2.

Our services are operating as usual, although you may notice additional measures to ensure hygiene and keep our patients and community safe. 

Being able to trace your contacts if you have been exposed to COVID-19 is critical to being able to quickly isolate any cases that may emerge, and stop the virus from spreading in the community. Please download the NZ COVID tracer app and turn on bluetooth functionality (a setting within the app), or use a diary and check-in wherever you go!

At Alert Level 2 it is important to maintain physical distancing where possible. This is especially important in places where it would be difficult to know who should be contacted for contact tracing purposes if you were to later discover you were infectious. In these situations please maintain a distance of two metres.  

People are asked to maintain a distance of one metre in health care settings where contact tracing is in place. We recognise this is not always possible when receiving care.

Southern COVID-19 vaccine planning

Southern DHB is working with the Ministry of Health on plans to offer a COVID-19 vaccine to people in Southern. There will be a sequenced rollout plan, so the appropriate vaccines are made available to people at the right time.

It is expected vaccines will be delivered to the first group of people in the second quarter of 2021. The vaccines will be free. It will not be mandatory for people to have a COVID-19 vaccine.

You can find information around timings and rollout on the Ministry of Health's website here.

For more information
Everything you need to know about COVID-19 in one place: COVID-19 National response website

What to do if you’ve recently been in Auckland

Overall, everyone should follow the Alert Level guidance relevant for where they are staying. Auckland is currently at Alert Level 3 and the rest of New Zealand is at Alert Level 2.

However, if you have been in Auckland recently, check the locations of interest page to find out if you might have been exposed to COVID-19 by being in the same place at the same time as a confirmed case. If you were potentially exposed, follow the guidance on the locations of interest page.

Monitor yourself for symptoms of COVID-19, including some of the less usual symptoms like muscle aches and pains and fatigue. Details of symptoms to look out for are on the Ministry website. Keep a record of where you’ve been. Use the COVID Tracer App to scan QR codes and make sure you’ve got Bluetooth turned on in the app. This helps with contact tracing.

It is important to note that Alert Level 3 means travel is restricted to those with exemptions or who are returning home. Visit the Unite Against COVID-19 website for information about Alert Level requirements.

Testing for COVID-19

If you have cold symptoms, you should be tested for COVID. It is FREE. You should stay home (or at your accommodation) until a negative result is returned and you are symptom free. 

If you are offered a test for COVID-19, please take it. It will help us ensure we don’t have community transmission, and help keep your friends, family and whānau safe.

Residents and visitors to Southern can access COVID-19 testing by calling  0800 VIRUS19. You can also contact your own family doctor for advice and testing. Testing is FREE. 

Where to get tested for COVID-19

People in the Southern district with cold and flu symptoms who were seeking a COVID-19 test should call 0800 VIRUS19 (0800 847 8719) or their local GP for advice, and should stay at home. If you are offered a test for COVID-19, please take it. It will help us ensure we don’t have community transmission, and help keep your friends, family and whānau safe. Regardless of where you are tested, COVID-19 testing is free of charge.

Call your GP or 0800 VIRUS19 (0800 847 8719) to get tested. If you don't have a GP, or your GP does not offer COVID-19 tests, you can attend a 'designated practice' for your test - please see the list of practices you can attend in the tab below. Testing is free.

0800 VIRUS 19 Call Centre hours
8.30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday
9am to 12pm, weekends

Please note that outside of these hours, your call will be redirected to Healthline.

COVID-19 testing is done by general  practices and designated general practices in Southern.

There are not currently any pop up testing or community based testing centres in the Southern region.

Pre-departure COVID-19 tests

Some countries require you to have a negative COVID-19 test before travel. You will need to pay for a test if it is for the purpose of entering another country. More information see Pre-departure COVID-19 Tests 

Symptoms for COVID-19 may include:
  • a fever (high temperature)
  • a cough
  • shortness of breath or trouble breathing
  • a sore throat
  • sneezing and a runny or dripping nose
  • a temporary loss of sense of smell
  • muscle aches and chills
If you are unwell but don't have COVID-19 symptoms

If you are unwell please call Healthline free on 0800 611 116 or call your local GP.

If you have a general health enquiry useful information can be found on the Ministry of Health website.

Visiting our hospitals

Please stay home if you're sick. If you have cold or flu symptoms please get a COVID-19 test.

It's important that you keep a record where you've been especially if you're visiting our facilities. Please make sure you scan the QR codes using the NZ COVID tracer app or if you don't have the app please sign the visitor sheet.

Information on social media

Follow these official accounts for up to date and accurate information.