19 Apr 2022

Top doctors signed off advice on ending MIQ in November

From Checkpoint, 5:08 pm on 19 April 2022

The Media Council has upheld complaints about this story with dissent and ruled that it breached accuracy, fairness and balance. The full ruling can be found on the council's website.

The country's two top doctors signed off on a suggestion to end MIQ in November last year.

Dr Ashley Bloomfield and Dr Caroline McElnay agreed MIQ was no longer justified on public health grounds, for most returnees.

But it took another three and a half months and seven rounds in the lottery until the system was wound up.

In a statement, the Covid-19 Minister's office said: "The memo you are referring to was initially provided to this office on 16 November 2021.

"Subsequently, on 23 November, the Ministry advised that it had sought further advice from Professor Antony Blakely and Professor Philip Hill who had reviewed the advice and provided their own professional and independent opinion.

"The initial memo you are referring to was not the final advice on this topic."