27 Apr 2020

As it happened: Covid-19 updates from NZ and around the world

5:06 pm on 27 April 2020

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the government is prepared to remain at Alert Level 3 for longer than two weeks if that was required.

As Covid-19 spreads around the world, it can be daunting keeping up with the information. For RNZ, our responsibility is to give you verified, up to the minute, trustworthy information to help you make decisions about your lives and your health. We'll also be asking questions of officials and decision makers about how they're responding to the virus. Our aim is to keep you informed.

New Zealand is set to move to alert level 3 at 11.59pm tonight, reducing restrictions on businesses and schooling.

Speaking at today's media conference, where the Health Ministry revealed there was just one new confirmed case of Covid-19, Ardern said the country had "avoided the worst", but she was not prepared to jeopardise New Zealand's gains by moving to alert level two too early.

"We can only do this if we all continue to pull together, and secondly I will not risk the gains we have made and the health of New Zealanders so if we have to remain at level 3, we will."

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Ardern said earlier modelling from Professor Shaun Hendy showed New Zealand could have faced up to 1000 new cases per day if measures were not taken.

"We will never know what would actually have happened without our level four restrictions, but we can look overseas and see that this devastating scenario has played out in many other countries."

She said there was no widespread community transmission now in New Zealand and "we have won that battle", but the country needed to hunt down the last few cases of the virus.

See how the events of the day unfolded with RNZ's live blog:

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